From our Correspondent
KOKRAJHAR, Oct 10: The 12-hour railway blockade from 5 am to 5 pm demanding the early creation of Bodoland state and ensuring political rights to the Bodos living outside the proposed Bodoland area by the ABSU, NDFB (P) and People’s Joint Action Committee for Bodoland Movement (PJACBM) on Tuesday paralyzed the movement of train services in the Northeast. Several thousands of activists and supporters blocked the railway track at Kokrajhar railway station and Dhekiajuli Railway station in Sonitpur district.
The general secretary of the ABSU, Lawrence Islary, fince secretary of NDFB (P), B. Detsung, former Rajya Sabha MP, UG Brahma, and others addressed the people and was also attended by BTC MCLAs-Rwngwra rzary, Jatirindra Brahma and others. In Dhekiajuli, ABSU president Promod Boro led the blockade where leaders of NDFB (P) and NDFB (R) and BWJF also took part along with the movement group leaders.
The general secretary of the ABSU, Lawrence Islary said the promise of BJP to create new states was proving to be an election gimmick as they had not done anything to resolve this long-pending issue of creation of new states in the country till date in spite of having provision in the Constitution of India (Article 2 & 3) to create new states. He said it was the responsibility of the BJP-led NDA government to bring the issue of new states creation in the Parliament for debate and discussion, whatever the recommendation comes through.
“We will be happy if we had been part of the so-called development taking place in the country but we have been discrimited in the largest democratic country of the world and constrained to live as backward and downtrodden people. Our identity and culture have been planted in an uncertain future. The Constitution has failed to provide rights and justice to the downtrodden communities,” he said, adding that the present ruling party (BJP) at the Centre would face a tough time in the ensuing 2019 election as they failed to keep their promises and fulfill the hopes and aspirations of the people demanding creation of new states. He also said there must be a holistic tiol policy to address the issue for creation of new states in India and a regiol basis decision to resolve the issue, in particular in case of Bodoland.
Islary said the tribals of Assam had not been given due justice in the matter of protection of their land and identity. Illegal migration has been taking place, particularly in tribal belts and blocks. Bodos are becoming minority in their own land and their language and culture are under threat because of uncontrolled migration in belt and block area which has been reflected by the HS Brahma Committee for Land Rights of Indigenous People of Assam in their interim report, he said, adding that after tough fight, Bodo language had been included in the Eight Schedule of the Constitution but what was the use if there was no teacher in Bodo medium schools and Bodo language was not allowed to be used officially in the State and denied from all opportunities which are provided by law and constitution.
Former Rajya Sabha MP, UG Brahma said it was the promise of the BJP in their election manifesto in the 2014 general election to resolve the Bodoland issue if they were voted to power but even after elapse of three-and-half years in power, the government had failed to resolve the burning issue even after repeated mass democratic movement. He said people had lost faith in the BJP now. The last tripartite talk held on April 26, 2017 with the Government of India and movement group i.e. ABSU, NDFB (P) and PJACBM, was not continued even after assurance was given by the Union Home Minister of India to continue the talk, he said, and added in such a situation the joint movement group had no purpose to keep silent but to launch vigorous mass democratic agitation staging tiol highway blockade, railway blockade, indefinite economic blockade and mass hunger strike. He also said the movement groups were raising their voice through non-violent way of movement and would continue unless the government brought about a lasting solution to address the Bodo issue.
The ABSU reiterated that the present Government of India headed by rendra Modi had its electoral promises. The Government of Assam, which came to power by giving promises of protecting jati (tive people), mati (land) and bheti (foundation of the society), had forgotten its promises and instead was more interested in protecting the Hindu Bangladeshis.
The ABSU and its movement group have announced the next course of action that includes economic blockade for indefinite period starting from the first week of November, two days tiol conference on creations of new states in India at gpur organized by tiol Federation for New States (NFNS) on October 14 and October 15, maha rally and maha dhar in New Delhi in first week of November and mass hunger strike during Parliament session.