KOKRAJHAR: The president of Bodoland People’s Front (BPF) Hagrama Mohilary on Monday demanded that Udalguri parliamentary seat should be made reserved for ST to ensure political rights of the tribal people living in the 6th schedule in the BTR. In a press meet held at Bathou-Kherai in Kokrajhar on Monday, Mohilary said, “I have nothing to say on the delimitation draft as we have got 6 reserved seats for ST in BTC area besides, increase of 3 more seats have taken the total assembly seats to 15 from 12.” He thanked the EC for giving more assembly seats in BTC and retaining Kokrajhar Parliamentary seat reserved for ST. He, however, said that his party will pursue the EC for inclusion of Udalguri in ST reserved category.
Former Chief of BTC said the present BTR government should convene a Cabinet discussion immediately on the delimitation issue and pass a cabinet decision pressurizing the EC, government of India and Assam to include Udalguri in ST reserved category. He said Pramod Boro led BTR government should take this initiative if they really want Udalguri as reserved seat for ST. He also said the ABSU which is supporting the UPPL led government should pressurize Boro to take Cabinet decisions in this regard in the council.
Reacting on celebration by supporters of UPPL by bursting fire crackers for declaring Kokrajhar as ST reserved seat by EC on June 20, Mohilary said they (UPPL) overjoyed the declaration of Kokrajhar as ST reserved seat but they are not concerned for Udalguri seat which proves that UPPL did not have agenda to make Udalguri as reserved for ST. He also said the BPF was clear on its stand that it will fight for Udalguri to include it as ST reserved seat before declaration of final publication of the constituency. He further said the UPPL led BTR government should take initiative for Udalguri by submitting claims and objections to EC by July 11 otherwise, the coming generations of tribal people will not forgive them.
On the other hand, the working president of Bodoland Janajati Suraksha Mancha D.D. Narzary said the Mancha was not satisfied with the delimitation of constituencies in terms of ST reserved seats in BTC. He said BTC being the 6th schedule administration, the number of tribal seats should have been increased from existing 6 to 10. Saying that the delimitation of constituencies in 6th schedule areas as contradicting, he said the delimitation had destroyed the political rights of tribal people in 6th schedule areas.
Narzary said BJSM had demanded an increase of tribal reserved seats in BTC in the pattern of 70: 30 for ST and general. He also said they demanded eviction of all illegal encroachers in tribal belts and blocks in BTC and the rest of the state before carrying out the delimitation process as lakhs of illegal encroachers have been living in tribal belts and blocks with voter cards. He further said the BJSM will not accept the delimitation of the constituency unless the encroachers are evicted and bring a correct delimitation of the constituency.