Stiff opposition by tribal bodies against granting ST status
KOKRAJHAR: Different tribal organizations under the banner of Coordination Committee of Tribal Organizations, Assam (CCTOA) on Monday staged a two-hour protest against the detrimental political move of the government to include six advanced and populous communities of Assam in the ST (P) list. The protest was staged in every district headquarter of Assam. Around 2,000 people took part in Kokrajhar while hundreds of tribal people gathered at Kajalgaon in Chirang district headquarter.
The CCTOA sent a memorandum to the Prime Minister of India demanding immediate withdraw of the Constitution ST (Amendment) Order Bill, 2019 from the Rajya Sabha in order to safeguard the constitutional rights of the existing STs, providing appropriate and adequate government support to the existing tribal communities instead of granting ST status to six advanced communities, immediate call for a tripartite talk with the Union Home Minister, Assam Chief Minister and CCTOA before the next Parliament session and immediate withdrawal of the recommendations made by the Government of Assam and BTC administration for granting ST status to six communities.
Addressing the gathering, the general secretary of Garo Students’ Union (GSA) Star G. Sangma said the BJP-led government at the Centre and the State were systematically suppressing the existing tribal communities. He warned that the tribal bodies would not sit silent if the Government of India went ahead with the move to include six communities in ST list. He said the original and existing 14 STs would not have representation in the Panchayati Raj institutions, urban bodies, municipal boards, State assembly and in the Parliament. He said at present the Indian Constitution did not have any provision to provide reservation for different categories of tribes. There is only one category which is ST that enjoys reservation under Article 342 and through promulgation of the ST Order, 1950. In Chirang district, the president of the ABSU, Promod Boro, who is also the convenor of the CCTOA, took part in the demonstration along with general secretary of NDFB (P), Gobinda Basumatary and other leaders of the tribal organizations.
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