With the West Bengal election round the corner, Home Minister Lahkmen Rymbui on Wednesday said the issue related to Ichamati village in East Khasi Hills district may be linked to the upcoming West Bengal elections slated to be held next year.
“Since the West Bengal elections is to be held in 2021, maybe it (Ichamati) is linked to that by different organizations to show who is protecting the interest of the Bengali people but by doing that they are harming more the interest of the people who are living in harmony in spite of the last incident, which happened 6-7 months back,” Rymbui told reporters.
The home minister said the allegation regarding the atrocities against the non-tribal people in Ichamati is totally baseless.
“The Deputy Commissioner has ordered an inquiry and also from the police, we have conducted an inquiry and found whatever allegations made, it is totally baseless. Moreover, as of now, there is no law and order, no tension in Ichamati as the people whether tribal or non-tribal are living peacefully,” he said.
Requesting all concerned to refrain from communalizing the issue, Rymbui said, “Anything we do, we should not vitiate the atmosphere or disturb peace and tranquility in the state. I request everybody not to give communal colours to any incident”
The state government has denied permission to All Bengali Youth & Students Organization (ABYSO), which wanted to visit Ichamati to take stock of the alleged institutionalized harassment against non-tribal women and children.