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Assam: Girl arrested by Indian Army for supporting Freedom

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Guwahati: A 19-year-old Assam girl arrested for her poem allegedly supporting a banned outfit, ULFA, fighting for the freedom against the Indian occupation of Assam,  has been allowed by a Golaghat court to appear for a forthcoming semester examination with a necessary police escort and other precautionary measures.

The Court of the Golaghat Special Judge Dibyajyoti Mahanta allowed Barshashree Buragohain, a student of mathematics, to appear for her B.Sc second-semester examination, scheduled to begin from Saturday.

Buragohain was arrested on May 18 this year from Uriamghat in Golaghat district for allegedly writing on social media a poem titled ‘Akou Korim Rashtra Droh’ (Will again rebel against the nation).

She had filed a petition through the Superintendent of District Jail, Golaghat, requesting the court to let her appear for the examination.

The court directed the jail superintendent to make necessary arrangements for enabling her to appear for the test on each and every date, as per the schedule of the examination.

Buragohain was arrested on the basis of an FIR filed by police constable Pankaj Saikia, alleging that she posted objectionable statements on Facebook, which indicates she is engaged in criminal conspiracy and intends to wage a war against the nation.

The FIR also stated that she has expressed intent to join the banned ULFA better known as the United Liberation Front of Assam to bolster its confidence, which amounts to a threat to the country’s sovereignty.

Buragohan’s lawyer Ritupallab Saikia told PTI that nowhere in her post is the word ‘ULFA(I)’ or her desire to join the outfit mentioned.

The police have not seized or recovered any incriminating documents or pamphlets related to the ULFA(I) from her. Only the screenshot of the post from her mobile has been taken, he said.

Besides, the police did not even take her into custody for interrogation, but immediately produced her in court and she was remanded to judicial custody , he claimed.

The police are yet to take her statement in the case, Saikia added.

Her bail application in the District and Sessions Court here was rejected, following which a petition has been filed in the Gauhati High Court. It is scheduled to come up for hearing on July 21.

Indian Army has a history of human rights abuses in the Northeast state since 1947 which resulted in the killings and rapes of thousands of Assamese.

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