The Chief Minister Office (CMO) and the ruling Mizo National Front (MNF) in Mizoram have denied allegations that chief minister Zoramthanga as well as the Mizoram government was having nexus with a Silchar based trader, who recently came under the police’s radar for his alleged link to smuggling of Burmese dried areca nuts.
The clarification came after an Assam based online portal reported that the house of Abu Mazumdar, a resident of Silchar’s Itkhola in Assam’s Cachar district, who was allegedly spotted at a dinner between Zoramthanga and his Assam counterpart Himanta Biswa Sarma in New Delhi recently, was raided by Assam police in connection with smuggling of Burmese supari.
The dinner was held on the sidelines of the border talks in November last year as a goodwill gesture.
The report also alleged that Mazumdar was invited by Zoramthanga at the dinner as he was a close ally of the Mizoram government.
It has also carried a picture of the dinner where Mazumdar was spotted.
“If sources are to be believed, Abu Mazumdar is a top-level handler and has close relationships with Mizoram government,” the report in the online news portal said.
Soon after the report was published, it was widely circulated on social media in Mizoram with some vernacular dailies reproducing it.
Denouncing the allegation as ‘baseless’, the CMO and MNF in separate statements on Monday said that chief minister Zoramthanga did not invite Mazumdar at the dinner.
The CMO said that the dinner was hosted by Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma at Assam House in New Delhi on November 25 last year.
The Mizoram chief minister was accompanied by Delhi Mizoram House resident commissioner, Officer of Special Duty to the chief minister and additional personal secretary to the CM, it said.
“No other officials other than those who accompanied the chief minister took part at the dinner, which was hosted by Assam chief minister. Mazumdar might have been invited by the Assam chief minister,” the CMO said in the statement.
The MNF also said that the allegation that alleged areca nut smuggler Mazumdar accompanied the Mizoram chief minister was totally wrong.
Mazumdar was rather invited by the Assam chief minister at the dinner along with state minister Atul Bora, the party said.