KOKRAJHAR, July 10: A delegation of the Bodoland Janajati Suraksha Mancha (BJSM) led by its president Janaklal Basumatary called on the ST Commission, Government of India on Monday and urged the authority to deny ST status to Saranias in Assam as they were not notified ST. They also submitted memorandum opposing inclusion of Saranias as ST in the State.
Talking to this reporter from New Delhi, the working president of the BJSM, Daorao Dekhreb Narzary, who was Executive Member of the erstwhile BAC, said they met the ST Commission, Government of India, on Monday and discussed issuing ST certificate to Saranias under sub-title ‘Kachari’, who were not notified ST. He said the Department of WPT and BC, Government of Assam recently held a meeting with the Saranias and asked the Tribal Sangha to issue ST certificate to Saranias under sub-title ‘Kachari’, which was not acceptable as per law. “The Saranias are not bonafide tribals and on many occasions they identify themselves as ‘Sarania Kachari’ and ‘Kachari’ as sub-title when so desired,” he said, adding that the BJSM strongly opposed the issuing of ST certificate to Saranias.
Narzary said the Department of WPT and BC, Government of Assam, was not authorized to allow the Tribal Sangha to issue ST certificate to Saranias under its dictate as they were not included in the ST list. He said the members of the ST Commission attended the discussion patiently and heard their objection on issuing ST certificate to Saranias in Assam and assured to look into the matter seriously. He also said that the ST Commission assured them to stop issuing ST certificate to Saranias with immediate effect, saying that a particular department had no authority to grant ST status and ST certificate to non-notified communities. The ST Commission, Government of India, has again invited them to New Delhi to discuss the matter, said Narzary.
When asked about the ST certificate issued by the MP Naba Sarania in his official writing pad to Sarania people, Narzary said the matter was very serious and he was not given power to issue ST certificate as per his wishes. “The MP has been violating the law of land and insulting the existing tribal people of Assam by issuing ST certificate in his writing pad,” he said, adding that stringent action should be initiated against Kokrajhar MP Naba Kr. Sarania. He also urged the Government of Assam to stop MP Sarania from issuing ST certificate and called upon all tribal people to be vigilant against misuse of ST certificates by non-notified communities. He further expressed his anger over the All Assam Tribal Sangha (AATS) for keeping silent on the issue and asked the Sangha not to compromise on the issue of tribal interest.