Exactly four weeks after popular minority leader and All BTC Minority Students’ Union (ABMSU) president Lafikul Islam was killed by unidentified assailants in Kokrajhar, the Government of India on Monday handed over the investigation into the case to the CBI.
The decision came following an Assam government request after a Special Investigation Team (SIT) failed to make much headway in identifying and arresting the culprits responsible for the murder. An official statement issued here said Jitendra Singh, union minister for personnel, public grievances and pension etc, informed Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal over the telephone on Monday.
Lafikul (36) was shot from point-blank range at around 4:30 PM on August 1 inside a hardware store at Titaguri, about three km north of Kokrajhar town, with the two motorcycle-born masked men leaving little trace for the police to track them down. Four persons arrested so far include the hardware store owner, Lafikul’s PSO (a police constable who had gone on leave a day earlier) and one Antaz Ali, the latter allegedly the kingpin of a cattle-smuggling racket that sends out animals to Bangladesh across the international boundary from adjoining Dhubri and South Salmara districts.
While the Assam government had constituted an SIT to investigate the case on August 4, chief minister Sonowal had also the same day written to the union home minister recommending a CBI inquiry into it.