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Panel calls 100-hr strike

- Committee for Bodoland protests govt ‘attitude’

Kokrajhar, Feb. 25: The People’s Joint Action Committee for Boroland Movement has called a 100-hour strike in the BTAD and its adjoining tribal-dominated areas from Thursday midnight in protest against the state government’s “lackadaisical” attitude towards the Bodoland issue.

Parts of Sonitpur and Lakhimpur districts are likely to be affected by the strike.

Talking to reporters here today, chief convener of the committee, Jebra Ram Muchahary, expressed doubts that the ongoing dialogue was a ploy to neglect the whole peace process.

“We welcomed the government of India’s initiative to hold dialogue with the NDFB (P). But at the same time, the committee is dissatisfied with talks held on January 31, 2013, between officials of the government of India, those of the Assam government and the NDFB (P) leadership. The discussion that was held at mere official level was disgusting and inappropriate. The level of discussions that were held and that will be held in no way can solve the political issue of a separate state of Bodoland. The long-standing legitimate demand for a separate state of Bodoland is a political one and it should be settled at the highest political level so that it could be resolved once and for all,” Muchahary said.

He said: “We want to strongly convey to the government of India that we want a peaceful settlement of the genuine political demand and in no way want the ongoing talks to be deadlocked. For the sake of peace we strongly demand that the government of India hold the forthcoming dialogue with the NDFB (P) at the highest political level and to concede to the demand to create the separate Bodoland state in adherence to Articles 2 & 3 of the Constitution.”

“It is beyond contradiction that from the points of view of history, ethnic identity, language and culture besides constitutional provisions, they have every right to have a state of their own. The government of India should realise the fact that the demands of separate state of the indigenous people of Assam can never be resolved through any alternative arrangement,” he said. Muchahary said examinations, marriages, religious programmes, medical services, water and milk supply and electricity are exempted from the purview of the strike.


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