A former student leader on trial for his alleged role in a ULFA-induced bombing in Guwahati has been awarded the gold medal by the governor of Assam for passing his final exams, which he took behind bars.
Sanjib Talukdar, one of the suspects in a 2019 Guwahati explosion that injured 12, was the top of his class in Sociology, which he enrolled in and completed his Master of Arts at Krishna Kanta Handique State Open University (KKHSOU) while he was here in a prison.
Governor Jagdish Mukhi presented the gold medal to the under-trial, who had scored 71 per cent points, during the convocation in Guwahati on Thursday.
Sanjib Talukdar’s sister Dolly told PTI, “It is a mixed feeling for us. While we are happy that he has been awarded the gold medal, we are also sad that he is still behind bars. We know that he is innocent and have believe that justice will be done.”
The 29-year-old is one of the suspects in a blast on May 15, 2019 at RG Baruah Road in Guwahati. The NIA, which is investigating the case, had accused him in its report before a special court of conspiracy, unlawful activity and providing aid and support to the main defendant in the case.
Dolly said her brother, the youngest of five siblings, was pursuing M. Phil in Botany at the time of his arrest, shortly after the blast.
“He had completed the theory part of the course but was unable to complete his M Phil as he was unable to access the prison lab facilities. We hope he will be given time to complete it once he is released,” she added .
Dolly said Sanjib chose sociology after being in prison because it was a subject he confidently pursued even with limited resources in prison.
His bail application will be heard by the Gauhati High Court in another four months and the family hopes for a ruling in their favour. Sanjib was briefly paroled last year to attend Dolly’s wedding.
He was a president of the Post Graduate Students’ Union of Gauhati University from where he did his M Phil at the time of arrest, besides being known in literary circles for his writings and eloquence, Sanjib’s friend, who did not wish to be called said.
“Sanjib always excelled in everything he undertook. The news of his suspected involvement with the ULFA came as a shock to us. We hope justice will prevail and the truth will come out,” his friend added .
Sanjib also completed the Certificate in HIV and Family Education (CAFE) and Certificate in Human Rights (CHR) course, both from IGNOU.
He has appeared for Post Graduate Certificate in Geoinformatics from KKHSOU, the result of which is awaited.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by DailyExpertNews staff and is being published from a syndicated feed.)
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