Monday, November 29, 1999

Won``t protect anyone involved in corruption: Gogoi

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New Delhi, June 17 (PTI) Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi today rejected allegations of corruption against his government and said he will not protect anybody who is involved in financial irregularities. The opposition parties in Assam have been attacking Gogoi alleging that he was protecting those involved in corruption in the North Cachar Hills Autonomous Council. The CBI, probing the corruption cases, had recovered over Rs 13 crore from the home of a government official in Guwahati on Tuesday. "I appreciate the CBI for such a good catch. We are not going to give any protection to anybody who is involved in corruption. We will provide full support to CBI," Gogoi told reporters here. Refuting allegations of corruption against his ministerial colleagues, he dared the opposition to prove such charges. Five cases of corruption in the North Cachar Hills Autonomous Council in Assam have already been registered by the CBI. Talking about the flood situation, Gogoi said Assam has lost four lakh hectares of land since 1950 due to erosion. "We will have to prepare a long-term solution to the problem. Erosion is the single biggest problem in Assam today," he said adding, over three lakh people were affected due to this year''s flood. He also demanded expansion of banking services in Assam, saying number of bank branches in the interior areas was very less. Gogoi said he has already taken up the issue with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee. He said the banks should provide more loans to farmers at low interest rate.

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