Daimary should be Hanged: Kin of Blast Victims
GUWAHATI: On January 30 last, a special court in Guwahati sentenced National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB) chief Ranjan Daimary along with nine other accused in the serial bomb blasts in Assam that claimed 88 lives and left around 500 injured on October 30, 2008 to life imprisonment.
However, as goes the adage, “Justice delayed is justice denied,” a majority of the family members of the bomb blast victims felt that the judgement has come too late and that justice has been denied to them.
Speaking to G Plus, one of the victim’s kin, Kamala Choudhary, wife of Rajesh Choudhary who was killed in the blast at Ganeshguri, said that she is not satisfied with the judgment given to Ranjan Daimary, as the “resourceful” Anjali Daimary (his sister) can file a case and he will walk out a free man after a year or so.
"We don't want to see Ranjan Daimary ever again. They are wealthy people and are well-connected. So it might be easy for them to come out of jail. He should be given capital punishment or should rot forever in jail,” added Kamala whose husband was an auto-driver.
She further mentioned that although she has been working with the Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) on a daily wage basis, she is yet to become a regular employee till date.
“I have been running continuously between Janata Bhawan and the DC court. When I approached the GMC commissioner and requested her to give me a permanent job after the blasts, she said that she had no say in the matter and only the government could help me,” informed Choudhury who is a mother of three children.
She said that even during the Congress regime, the government did nothing for the families of blast victims.
“Now that the BJP government says that it works for the people, we are hoping that they think about us. On October 30 last year, during the programme held to commemorate 10 years of the blasts, Minister Siddhartha Bhattacharya had reassured me that I would definitely get a job but nothing has happened till date,” Choudhury added.
Another Guwahati resident, Niru Kalita, who lost her husband during the blast, told G Plus that her husband had retired just ahead of the day the blasts occurred.
“The judgement serves us little purpose as it has come very late. Only the families of the victims know what we have been through in the last ten years. Now, he (Daimary) should not be allowed to come out of jail on any grounds and should be denied contact with his family,” said Niru whose husband Pramod Kalita worked as a clerk in Guwahati.
She added that her daughter Rumi is a graduate in Political Science but could not get a government job all these years.
“She requested many government officials but to no avail. I spent each penny received as compensation by the government on my daughter’s education,” she mentioned.
She further said that she has been receiving Rs 3,000 as pension every month on behalf of her husband.
In the same vein, Tarali Das, who also lost her husband in the 2008 bomb blasts, said that she is not completely satisfied with the judgement.
“My daughter was two years old when my husband was killed. She didn’t even get to know her father. I have been running from pillar to post requesting the government for a job to sustain my family but nothing has been done in this regard,” said Tarali who works as a domestic help. She added that her daughter is currently studying in class 9.
She, however, added that some of her loss may be compensated if she gets a job.
Govt did not do enough for us: Blast victims’ family
According to officials, the state government had provided compensation to all the blast victims. The Assam government had provided Rs 3 lakhs each to the next of kin of the deceased.
Further, Rs 50,000 each was given to the 238 persons who sustained serious injuries while Rs 10,000 was provided to people with simple injuries.
In 2015, the then Kamrup (Metro) deputy commissioner, M Angamuthu had announced that apart from the compensation given by the state government, the next of kin of the deceased had also received an additional Rs 3 lakhs directly from the centre as a three-year lock-in account.
Further, according to officials, as per the rules of the Assam as well the central government, there is no provision to provide jobs to next of kin of the families affected by extremism.
Authorities said that the families of the victims had been made aware about the job issue years ago and had understood. Additionally, some of them had also brought forth the issue of improper payment of widow pension and Indira Awas Yojana and the government had assured them of all possible help.
However, on the other hand, the family members of those killed in the blasts feel that the government has not done enough for them. They informed G Plus that they feel as if the officials are not concerned about their plight.
“The government organises one programme every year to mark the occasion but are least bothered during the rest of the year. Even during the programme, none of the officials come up to us to ask about our well being or how we are conducting our lives,” complained a woman who had lost her husband in the blast which occurred at Ganeshguri.