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Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Assam DGP Asserts State’s Right to Recover Losses from Bandh Organizers

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In response to the recurring issue of bandhs causing substantial economic losses in Assam, Director General of Police (DGP) GP Singh has emphasized the government’s stance on recovering damages incurred by such blockades.

Referring to a 2019 order by the Gauhati High Court, Singh highlighted the state’s authority to recoup losses attributable to bandhs.

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In a social media post on X, Singh underscored the financial impact of a single day’s bandh, estimating a staggering loss of approximately INR 1643 Crores, considering Assam’s Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) stands at INR 5,65,401 Crore. Singh elucidated that these losses are recoverable as per Para 35(9) of the aforementioned court order.

The 2019 Gauhati High Court order delineates the government’s responsibility to assess and reclaim losses stemming from bandhs or blockades. It mandates the establishment of a Bandh Loss Compensation Fund within three months, to be overseen by an authority led by a retired District and Sessions Judge, possibly with administrative officer inclusion. This authority is empowered to engage assessors or valuers to evaluate compensation claims swiftly.

Furthermore, the order mandates that the recovered losses be deposited into the Bandh Loss Compensation Fund by the Home and Political Department of the Government of Assam.

The adjudication of compensation claims, extending to individuals, private and public entities, and juristic persons, will be undertaken by the Bandh Loss Compensation Fund authority, which is tasked with formulating an expeditious claims settlement procedure.

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With this assertion of state authority and legal framework, Assam aims to mitigate the socio-economic disruptions caused by bandhs while ensuring accountability among organizers and main office bearers of such disruptions.

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