From a correspondent
Silchar, July 6: The newly built central office of the union territory demand committee at Silchar Jail Road was iugurated on Sunday. Speaking on the occasion Paritosh Paul Choudhury, president, UTDC said that geographically Barak Valley is an extension of the Sylhet plains and was connected to the larger Bengal territory comprising Bangladesh and West Bengal during colonial times. The hill areas of Dima Hasao, Karbi Anglong and the Meghalayan hills stand between the Barak and the Brahmaputra valleys.
So, the amalgamation of the two valleys can never be a tural administrative set up. Yet the Assam government continues to make efforts to thrust the Assamese language on the people of the valley despite repeated protests and the status of Bengali as the official language of the region. Often government notifications are sent in Assamese which is an insult to the people of the valley. On the job sector also the Assam government is discrimiting against the eligible youths from the valley.
Lack of employment opportunities is a major issue for the youth of the valley. Almost none of the senior or middle magement level jobs of the state government are given to the candidates from Barak Valley. Today, a majority of the employees at the government offices of the valley are from the Brahmaputra valley which is a violation of the policy of equal opportunities.
The valley does not have an all weather road connecting it with the state capital. The only solution to these issues is separate statehood. To make it come true, awareness among the people of the valley has to be created. The newly formed political party, ‘Barak Bhoomi Gatantric Dal’ will fight it out democratically and press for separation of Barak Valley from Assam, Paul Choudhury pointed out. He further said that his organization is not here to play dirty politics, unlike other self-serving organizations. He requested the people of the valley to come forward and join them in this movement. The identity crisis faced by the people of the valley is unparallel and cannot be compared with any other linguistic group across the world. The entire tion has absolutely no idea that close to 40 lakh Bengali speaking people residing in the three districts of Cachar, Karimganj and Hailakandi in the south of Assam are as indigenous as any other community of the state.
“But shockingly we are often branded as ‘Bangladeshis’ by our Assamese counterparts. The state government continues its step motherly treatment towards the valley’s common masses. Only a separate identity of our own can help us to protect our distinct culture and lead to an overall development of the valley. In this regard we will we form block level committees in Cachar and gradually all over the valley. We shall file hundreds of affidavits and go to Delhi to raise our demand for a separate statehood for Barak Valley,” Paul Choudhury added. Others members who spoke on the occasion included Sanjib Debth, convener, Hariz Ali Laskar, general secretary, Ainul Haq Mazumder, working president, Mohiuddin Laskar, vice president and Soumitra th, secretary, Advocates’ Bar Association and convener of the central committee of Union Territory Demand Committee.