FROM A CORRESPONDENT
Bokajan, November 27: Around 300 supporters of Hills State Demand Council (HSDC) today staged a sit-in demonstration here demanding the immediate creation of a hill state for Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao. This is said to be the last in their series of mass demonstration at all the sub-divisions in the hill district of Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao.
Many prominent political figures including Holiram Terang, ex-minister and convener, HSDC, Dr Jotson Bey, ex-CEM and convener, HSDC, J.I. Kathar, convener, HSDC, Chumang Kro, ex-CEM and convener, HSDC among others were present in the mass demonstration.
Addressing the gathering, ex-minister Holiram Terang said that Centre was made aware of the statehood demand comprising the two hill districts in the present state of Assam through numerous memoranda and democratic movements by different political parties and organisations in the past three decades and in response, the Centre had signed a tripartite Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Government of Assam and the Autonomous State Demand Committee (ASDC) (now HSDC) and other organisations on April 1, 1995. However, the core issue of statehood has not been resolved yet.
It may be recalled that the Union Government had also signed a Memorandum of Settlement (MoS) with the United People’s Democratic Solidarity (UPDS) and Dima Halam Daoga (DHD) on November 25, 2011 and October 8, 2013 respectively. These two MoS with the armed groups born on the issue of statehood are yet to be ratified by the Parliament.
Later, the demonstrators submitted a memorandum to the Prime Minister through SDO (C) Bokajan briefing the provisions for creation of a hill state within the present state of Assam. The memorandum stated that the Autonomous Council of both the hill districts had passed unimous resolutions demanding statehood and even the elected representatives in the Assembly and Parliament had raised the issue on several occasions.
The memorandum also drew the attention of the Prime Minister towards creation of the state of Meghalaya back in 1969, comprising the hill district of Khasi and Jaintia Hills and Garo hills of the state of Assam under the sixth schedule of the Indian Constitution.
Back then, the two hill districts of Karbi Anglong (earlier Mikir Hills) and Dima Hasao (earlier North Cachar Hills) were administered under the same sixth schedule provisions but, did not join Meghalaya and were promised of Autonomous State status whenever required by incorporating Article 244 (A) in the constitution of India. However, the Centre has failed to incorporate the same on grounds.
On the other hand, the government of India has created the states of Jharkhand, Uttarakhand and Chattisgarh although there was no Parliamentary Commitment or any special constitutiol provision. Lately, the Government of India had also created the state of Telanga despite the fact that the Srikrish Commission constituted by the Government of India had opposed the move, the memorandum added.