Guwahati(PTI): Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi on Wednesday ordered an inquiry into the circumstances leading to the death of 14 construction workers hailing from the state in Meghalaya.
Gogoi directed Additional Chief Secretary Shyam Lal Mewara to inquire into the circumstances leading to the death of the labourers with cooperation from Meghalaya government, an official release said here.
Chief Secretary Jitesh Khosla has taken up the matter with his Meghalaya counterpart P.B.O. Warjri, the sources said.
While the bodies of the 14 labourers were taken to Dhubri district early Wednesday morning, local groups blocked highways and demanded a thorough inquiry into the incident.
The authorities had conducted post-mortem examination of all the bodies before they were handed over to the respective families. Mystery shrouds the death of 14 migrant labourers from Assam as it is still unclear whether they actually died from food poisoning or was there any ‘foul play’ in the incident.
While initial inquiry indicates that the labourers died from food poisoning but a photograph taken at the place of occurrence gives an indication that the bodies o the labourers might have been dumped there after their deaths.
However, at the moment no conclusion can be reached as police have just started their investigation. The Meghalaya Police will send the leftover food consumed by the 14 migrant labourers to the Forensic Science Laboratory.
The deceased labourers – all hailing from Dhubri District of Assam – have been identified as Jahirul Haque (22), Md Inamul Haque (29), Md Mafigul Haque (21), Amal Mani Das (23), Md Manzur Ali (36), Md Karim Uddin Ahmed (18), Majimur Ali (18), Md Sopikal Ali (19), Md Hachan Ali (19), Md Moni Hussain (44), Md Mazid Ali (22), Md Shohidur Hussain (21), Md Jahirul Haque (23) and Md Minal Haque (19). ) Incidentally, several attempts were made to contact the East Jaintia Hills Deputy Commissioner for information but the officer did not pick up the telephone.
Family members of the victims told local television channels here that the labourers were part of a group of 23 workers, who had gone to work at a bridge construction site at Lad Rymbai in East Jaintia Hills District. Some family members alleged foul play, claiming that militants were involved in the death of their relatives.