SHILLONG: In a politically significant development, East Garo Hills police have charge-sheeted Social Welfare Minister Deborah Marak and political activist Tennydard Marak on Monday for hatching conspiracy with the banned outfit GNLA to influence the voters in the last Assembly elections held in February, 2013.
East Garo Hills district police chief DNR Marak on Monday informed that Independent candidate from Williamangar Jonathon N Sangma, who had unsuccessfully contested the Assembly elections, had filed an FIR on February 16, last year against Deborah accusing her of taking the help of GNLA to influence the voters to vote for her in the elections.
Jonathon had alleged about the use of GNLA militants’ power by Deborah to intimidate villages to ensure they did not vote for him.
The police have submitted its investigation report to the Court of Chief Judicial Magistrate and now the Court will draw up legal proceedings against those named in the charge-sheet.
The SP said that just one week prior to the elections, posters were pasted in Williamnagar in Garo language meaning “Whoever votes Jonathan, this is gun and this is bullet” with pictures of guns and bullets.
During investigation, it was found that pasting of posters was the handiwork of Deborah, Tennydard and GNLA militants, the SP alleged.
Tennydard, who is another accused in the charge-sheet, is in the news for questioning the tribal status of Chief Minister Mukul Sangma, and he is also pursuing the case in Supreme Court.
According to SP, the duo allegedly struck a deal with GNLA for helping Deborah win the election in lieu of propping up the cause of GNLA for a separate statehood.
Earlier, on January 21, 2013 suspected GNLA militants had targeted Jonathon during a public meeting held at Dawa Songgital in East Garo Hills.
According to SP, police have enough evidence to prove the involvement of Deborah and Tennydard for their conspiracy with the GNLA even as the official said that the police would soon charge-sheet GNLA cadres since they are banned militant outfit and police requires prosecution sanction to charge sheet the militant group.
“Some top names at the commander level of GNLA have come up during investigations,” he said.
Asked whether there was any political pressure to pursue the case, the SP said, “We have investigated the case as per merit (and is) based on evidence,”
The filing of charge-sheet has resurrected uncomfortable questions on the suspected politician-militants nexus in the state.