Kokrajhar, May 1: The Bodo Women for Peace Movement (BWPM) organized a one-day State-level consultation programme at the Vivekananda Kendra Institute of Culture in Guwahati recently. The theme of the topic of discussion taken up was ‘Conflict, Reconciliation, Peace and Women in Assam’. The programme was convened under the leadership of Pratibha Brahma, adviser, BWPM and Rangina Bargayary, the convener of BWPM.
The one-day consultation aimed to create an opportunity for women leaders of Assam to brainstorm on the past, present and future Assam, to discuss debate and propose civil societies perspective on the amicable solutions to the different conflict and contradictions in the State, to contribute towards building a culture of dialogue in the State irrespective of the sensitivity of the issue, thereby prevent physical conflict and to amplify women’s voices on different pressing issues of Assam.
The programme was inaugurated by Chikimiki Talukdar, chairperson of Assam State Commission for Women. Writer and journalist Maini Mahanta, ABSU president Promod Boro and Sanjay Borbora, Dean, School of Social Sciences and Humanities, addressed the house during the inaugural session. The seminar was chaired by writer and journalist Ratna Bharali. Dr.Birubala Rabha (social activist), Tinnat Atifa Masod (writer and social activist), Krishna Sharma (advocate) and other dignitaries were the speakers.
Dr Sunita Changkakati, chairperson of ACPCR, graced the open plenary as chief guest and assured that she would coordinate with women activists of BWPM in working for child rights and women welfare, especially in neglected and backward areas of BTAD where evils like human trafficking, child abuse, school dropout and child marriage due to acute economic crisis were common.
Chikimiki Talukdar said, “Today Assam is witnessing atrocities and violence against women. Rape of minor girls and women is getting rampant in the State and it is only when women raise a united voice against such violation, we will be able to resolve these issues.”
Maini Mahanta said that the tribal women, especially Bodo women, were more empowered. “I urge you all to come forward and initiate the peace process and right participation of women in decision making,” she said. Dr.Birubala Rabha, chairperson of Birubala Mission, appealed to women leaders of BWPM to work for uplifting tribal women in education so that blind superstitious beliefs like witch hunting could be eradicated.