Sonowal unveils goat farm for ex-rebels

first_imgAssam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal on Monday inaugurated a goat farm at Chamuapara in Darrang district for rehabilitating pro-talks member of the United Liberation Front of Asom. He also distributed subsidies to former militants of various groups under the Swabalamban, or self-reliance, project.Mr. Sonowal said the rehabilitation scheme was conceived by the State government to provide means of livelihood to the former members of militant outfits who have decided to return to the mainstream so that they could live a life of dignity.“Our government has been putting a lot of emphasis on creating self-employment opportunities for the youth of the State and the young generation must take up agriculture with a renewed vigour to contribute to economic growth,” he saidadding that 18 lakh soil health cards were issued across the State during the last three years.Generating revenueThe goat farm, built by the government, would be managed by 28 former militants under an agreement that they share a part of the profit with the Veterinary Department. Some 60 hectares of land adjoining the farm, lying unused for years, has also been assigned to another set of former militants to cultivate.“We are planning to let former militants, trained in farm skills, utilise unused government land for animal husbandry and agriculture or horticulture pursuits. This is aimed at checking encroachment of government land besides generating revenue through the rehabilitation scheme,” said Hiren Nath, Inspector-General of Police (Special Branch), who is also the rehabilitation officer in the State.He said that Sri Lanka has expressed interest in replicating the Assam model to rehabilitate former members of the LTTE.last_img