Adivasis of Assam Demand ST Status
A massive rally of the Adivasis of Assam was held at Sonitpur. The rally was titled 'Gana Hoonkar' to demand for the ST status for the Adivasis of the state. A bike rally and a cultural procession too was organised. The gathering was addressed by All Assam Adivasi Students Association (AAASA) president Pradeep Nag. Amarjit Kerketa, president of Sonitpur unit of AAASA was also present at the event. Tribute was paid to the martyrs. Addressing the gathering, Nag once again requested the state government to hand over land rights to the Adivasi people and said that it is high time for the government to grant ST status to all Adivasis of the state. He also raised the issue of raising daily wage of tea garden workers to Rs 351 per day. At present, the tea garden workers in the Brahmaputra Valley are paid a daily wage of Rs 167 while the tea garden workers in Barak Valley are getting Rs 145 per day. Regarding granting of ST status, Nag said that they are demanding the status as per provisions mentioned in the Constitution. "We are not asking for anything outside the Constitution. We are not asking for new rules to be set. If the government delays the process of granting ST status to us Adivasis, Assam will be finished. It is the Adivasis who are everywhere along the borders of Assam and safeguarding the border." Nag said that the Adivasis feel cheated because though the government's slogan is Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikash, the Adivasis of Assam have not seen any development. Almost every tribe or community has a autonomous council but the Adivasis have not got anything.