Guwahati, Sep 18 : Assam Minister Jayanta Mallabaruah has come out in defence of Riniki Bhuiyan Sarma, the wife of Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, who was recently embroiled in a land scam controversy.
Mallabaruash said, “Ms. Riniki Bhuiyan is an established entrepreneur. Her father Jadav Bhuiyan was also a well-known businessman in Assam. When there were only a small number of business establishments in the state, Jadav Bhuiyan started his own venture.”
The minister asserted that if a successful entrepreneur wants to expand his or her own ventures, there is no harm in it. Even such persons are also eligible to apply for government benefits as per the rules and procedures.
“Although the Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma has clarified that no one in his family received any government benefits, I believe that if rule allows, any person involved in business venture can apply for benefits under government schemes. There is no restriction on it,” he added.
According to Jayanta Mallabaruah, Riniki Bhuiyan Sarma was unnecessarily dragged into a controversy by the opposition to malign the image of Chief Minister.
Earlier, allegations surfaced that the Chief Minister’s wife had bought 50 bigha 2 kata of agricultural land in Kaliabor Dargaji village in Nagaon district after Sarma became the CM two years ago.
Citing a RTI report, it was claimed that as per the ceiling law, no one can own more than 49.5 bigha of agricultural land and therefore, after the Chief Minister’s wife bought the land, its category was changed to industrial land.
It has been also alleged that Riniki’s company ‘Pride East Entertainment’ also received government assistance of Rs 10 crore from the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sampada Yojana to set up a food processing enterprise there. The whole process was completed in just 10 months.
Congress MP Gaurav Gogoi shared an image on his X handle and wrote, “PM Modi launched the Kisan Sampada scheme to double the income of farmers of India. But in Assam, Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma used his influence to help his wife’s firm get Rs 10 crore as part of credit linked subsidy.”
This led to a war of words on X between Gogoi and CM Himanta Biswa Sarma. Both of them were seen attacking each other on the social media platform.