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UBPO and BJSM slam government for eviction of indigenous people

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  1 Dec 2017 12:00 AM GMT

From our Correspondent

KOKRAJHAR, Nov 30: The United Bodo People’s Organization (UBPO) and the Bodoland Jajati Suraksha Mancha (BJSM) on Thursday came down heavily on the Sarbanda Sonowal government in Assam for targeting only the indigenous people of Assam instead of evicting the suspected tiols from government land, reserve forests, tiol parks, char areas and tribal belts and blocks.

The eviction drive in Amchang Wildlife Sanctuary and Karbi Anglong has united the spirit of tribal people to raise a stronger voice against the successive governments who have miserably failed to protect the tribal lands as well as government land in the hands of suspected tiols and non-protected class of people.

In a press statement, the president of UBPO, Mihiniswar Basumatary and general secretary Anil Basumatary expressed strong resentment over the eviction drive where several hundreds of indigenous families who had been living in the vicinity of Amchang Wildlife Sanctuary, were evicted by the forest department. They also criticized the Sarbanda Sonowal government for evicting over 500 families in sector 1, mainly Bodo community, in Karbi Anglong along the Assam-galand border. They also alleged that the houses of over 500 Bodo families in Karbi Anglong had been damaged.

The UBPO lambasted the Department of Forest and Government of Assam for action against the indigenous people in the ongoing eviction drive saying that the government should understand the illegal land occupiers in tribal belts and blocks, including xatras in Assam and BTC region. The government should ensure implementation of the Traditiol Forest Dwellers and Recognition Act, 2006 but instead of this, the present government had targeted only the indigenous people of Assam but the illegal encroachers and suspected tiols were being given a free hand.

The leaders of UBPO urged the Government of Assam to stop senseless eviction against the indigenous people of Assam without ensuring proper rehabilitation and compensation. They also demanded that the government must have guts to evict the illegal settlers in char areas, grazing fields, reserve forest, tiol parks and government khas land. They also warned that they would not tolerate the anti-tribal and anti-indigenous people attitude of the Sarbanda Sonowal-led BJP coalition government in Assam.

On the other hand, the BJSM also slammed the Government of Assam led by Sarbanda Sonowal for its anti-tribal stand. The president of the Mancha, Jaklal Basumatary and working president DD rzary said the Sarbanda Sonowal government in Assam had shown that its interest was not for the tribal people but for the illegal settlers in the State. They said over 4 lakh bighas of tribal belts and blocks lands had already been occupied and grabbed by suspected Bangladeshis and non-protected class of people but instead of taking action against the illegal encroachers in the protected tribal lands, the government was targeting the tribal and indigenous people of Assam and thus encouraging the illegal influx in the State.

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