The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
Email This Page
Assam braces for chain of blockades & bandhs

Guwahati, April 17: Assam is staring at the unnerving prospect of incessant road blockades, rail rokos and statewide bandhs from Monday.

The Peoples Committee for Peace Initiative in Assam (PCPIA), a pressure group at the forefront of the campaign for revival of the peace process with Ulfa, today said its emergency cell would announce its next phase of agitation tomorrow.

PCPIA chief co-ordinator Lachit Bordoloi said over telephone from Nalbari that the group had no option left but to take some hard decisions to convey to the powers-that-be that they would go to any length to realise the dream of lasting peace.

Apart from Bordoloi, the PCPIA members who will be closeted in the meeting tomorrow include Dilip Patgiri, Birinchi Neog, Nitul Bora and Bhaskar Dahal.

“After our experience of the past month, we have been left with no option but to intensify our agitation. The mode of protests could entail anything from highway blockades to rail rokos and Assam bandhs. These are likely to begin from Monday. We will be holding a meeting tomorrow in Guwahati to fine-tune our plans. We know a lot of inconvenience will be caused, but we really have no option. If necessary, we are ready to give our blood to stop the ongoing bloodshed and end this period of uncertainty and tension,” Bordoloi added.

Bordoloi was attending a protest dharna organised by the Nalbari unit of the PCPIA.

Neog warned that if Dispur continued to remain indifferent, then the agitation could even take on a militant hue and the government would have to bear the responsibility for the consequences.

The pressure group, in particular, is very upset over the government’s indifference towards its demand to revive the peace process and make public information about Ulfa leaders who went missing in the Bhutan operations of 2003.

It mentioned that even though four weeks have elapsed, Dispur has not yet responded to the fast-unto-death by wives of these missing Ulfa leaders. The protesting wives are at present at Gauhati Medical College Hospital. Their condition is said to be deteriorating.

Dispur has pleaded before PCPIA members its helplessness to revive the peace process while Delhi appeared least bothered. Even Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, during his talk of peace and development, skirted the issue.

Sources in Dispur said the government was trying to find a way out to revive the peace process but would not tolerate any kind of disturbance.

Email This Page