Sonia Gandhi positive on ULFA talks

New Delhi/Guwahati, June 24 UPA president Sonia Gandhi gave a positive response for ULFA-Govt peace talks, said Hiren Gohain, member of a delegation of civil society of Assam.

"We (six-member delegation of ‘Sanmilita Jatiya Abhibartan’ of Assam) got a positive signal in terms of holding peace talks with ULFA after meeting UPA president at her 10th Janapath residence in New Delhi," Dr Gohain told media on Wednesday, when asked about Sonia's reaction on settlement of insurgency problem in Assam.

“The forum of civil society of Assam are satisfied with the discussion with Sonia Gandhi and hope that, the pro ULFA-Govt talks will restore peace in Assam and the central government will be positive on the major issue," he added.

The delegation will meet Union home minister P Chidambaram on Wednesday evening in New Delhi.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh too has given a positive signal for talks with ULFA and releasing leaders of the outfit from jail after the discussion with the peace brokers’ delegation of Assam held on Monday.

On other hand , ULFA Commander-in-Chief Paresh Barua demanded clarification from Hiren Gohain on his comment to media that stated “the ULFA will compromise on the issue of sovereignty and Paresh Barua would be marginalized in peace talks with the government”.

Sending a email to media, Barua said, “Following the six-member delegation of National Convention discussion with the Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh on June 21, some of Assam State media reported on the next day that, ULFA would come to compromise on the issue of sovereignty if the negotiations be held. By quoting Dr Gohain, media also reported that, Paresh Baruah will have to quit the ULFA if he opposes the resolutions, which passed by the central committee leaders of the outfit”.

On the basis of these reports ULFA Commander-in-Chief Paresh Baruah asked Gohain to clarify his comments whether he made the statement or not.

Barua also slammed the state media for not following the standards of 'true journalism'.