NET News Desk
The Assamese student fraternity from across the country have on Monday wrote to Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, demanding the immediate release of peasant leader Akhil Gogoi and other activists who have tested positive for Covid-19 and are admitted to hospitals.
Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti, KMSS leader Gogoi, who was arrested by the National Investigation Agency, NIA for his alleged role in the protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act last year, tested positive for novel coronavirus inside the Guwahati Central Jail.
The student fraternity while condemning the ‘unjustified long-term imprisonment’ of anti-CAA activists- Akhil Gogoi, Dhaijya Konwar, Bittu Sonowal, and Manas Konwar among others stated that, “It is deplorable how under the pretext of several flimsy allegations one following the other, the investigating agency has managed to extend their period of incarceration for more than six months now.”
It is a matter of great concern to the people of Assam that a number of students, including Devangana Kalita who led the anti-CAA protests in New Delhi, have faced the same predicament, it added.
“At a time when the entire globe faces tremendous challenges of a pandemic situation, we, the student community of Assam demand the provision for proper treatment to the imprisoned Akhil Gogoi, Dhaijya Konwar, Bittu Sonwal and Manash Konwar, and we demand their release without further delay,” the letter signed by around 350 students said.
The fraternity further claimed that it is an “apparent indifference of the government of Assam to provide adequate healthcare to the inmates including Akhil Gogoi, who has been of poor health for a while now and recently tested positive for Covid-19 along with his KMSS associates.”
“It is not only unjust but also a clear violation of the rights conferred by the constitution. It must be noted that The UN has also called for the release of political prisoners citing the dire situation in all the countries,” read the statement.
They demanded immediate and unconditional release of all anti-CAA activists and proper medical care for them.
Students from Cotton University, Tezpur University, Gauhati University, Dibrugarh University, Assam University, IIT Guwahati, NIT Silchar, Gauhati Medical College, National School of Drama, JB College, Arya Vidyapith College, North Lakhimpur College, DKD College, Darrang College among others. Many of the students studying in Delhi University, JNU and abroad also extended solidarity to this cause.