Assam Govt to demarcate Army firing range : CM

Sarma

Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma Tuesday said that demarcation of an Army firing range in Tamulpur district is being done so that civilians living inside the area can be shifted as there are frequent incidents of injury or death and damage to property in the test firings.

The state government will look into whether any monetary compensation or assistance can be provided to families whose kin have been killed in such incidents.

CM Sarma, who also holds the home portfolio, was replying to a Member’s Hour discussion when the MLAs speak on different problems in their constituencies. Tamulpur MLA Jolen Daimary had raised the problem faced by people living in the firing range.

Civilians and their houses have been hit by bullets from the firing range on several occasions over the years with some of the injuries turning fatal. Many people also collect the empty shells and other materials from the area during the test firings and run the risk of being injured.

The empty shells and other materials that are gathered are sold by the people to scrap dealers.

“We are aware that there are people residing inside the notified firing range area. As a result of the test firings people and property get affected at times”, the chief minister said.

He said the main problem was lack of clear boundary demarcation of the firing range and the Tamulpur deputy commissioner has already written to the relevant authorities about the issue.

Once the demarcation is completed, civilians inside the range will be shifted out, Sarma said.

He also said the government will see if any financial one-time assistance can be provided to the families whose kin have been killed in the incidents in the firing range.

“We will have to check whether they can be covered under any existing schemes. We will look into it”, Sarma added.

Responding to problems emerging after roads and bridges were washed away by this year’s floods in different parts of the state, the chief minister said re-construction and repair work will be carried out through different projects and schemes.

A World Bank project for bridges will cover many damaged bridges, while the roads can be re-built under various schemes of the state government, Sarma, who also holds charge of the public works department, added.

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