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‘Unfortunate that CJI dismissed issue of constitutional mandate for tribal reserved right’,says Bodoland Janajati Suraksha Mancha (BJSM)

KOKRAJHAR: Bodoland Janajati Suraksha Mancha (BJSM) on Wednesday asserted that Kokrajhar MP Naba Kumar Sarania won the election by successful cheating of his community status. The president of the BJSM, Janaklal Basuamtary in a statement said that Sarania won the last MP election from 5 Kokrajhar ST reserved constituency by claiming that he belonged to the Boro Kachari community which is recognized as Scheduled Tribe and a ST certificate was obtained from All Assam Tribal Sangha (AATS). “So, our main issue is that he belongs to Sarania Kachari community, not Boro Kachari as he claimed. Sarania Kachari is not notified ST in constitutional (ST) order, 1950 as amended time to time,” he said, adding that since Naba Kr. Sarania belonged to the Sarania community, he was not ST and could not contest from the ST reserved MP constituency.

Basuamtary added that both the High Court and Supreme Court did not address these issues on the plea that the petitioners had no pleading in respect of invalidity of caste certificate.

Basuamtary said in absence of such pleading, the caste certificate remained valid. The petitioner did not challenge his certificate, so there was no pleading to this effect and no issues framed. But the main plea that Naba Kr. Sarania did not belong to Boro Kachari community was there and due issue was framed to this effect. He also said that had this issue been addressed, the respondent’s claim of belonging to Boro Kachari community would have gone and his ST claim would be wrong despite his holding caste certificate. Basumatary said there were several case laws to this effect to address such issues in election petition despite having caste certificate. Both the courts dismissed the issue without addressing it. Hence, the petitioners do not accept the order as justified, he said. He further said the petitioner would decide to file review petition as per law at an appropriate time.

The BJSM president said it was unfortunate that such an important issue to safeguard the constitutional mandate for tribal reserved right was dismissed so lightly, that too by the Chief Justice of India who was from Assam and knew that the Sarania community was a separate community and not the same as the Boro Kachari community. “If he justifies the cheating of the respondent, where will the poor tribal people go seeking justice for protection of their rights? The court will have to go deeper to address the issues raised for the case,” he said.