|The AKRSU rally in Bongaigaon on Sunday.
Picture by UB Photos
Bongaigaon, Aug. 25: The Koch-Rajbongshi organisations in Assam today pledged to launch a democratic struggle for a separate “Kamtapur” state during a public rally at Barpara public field here.
The rally was held under the aegis of the Hiteswar Barman-led All-Koch Rajbongshi Students’ Union (AKRSU).
Over 10,000 supporters from lower Assam districts gathered at the venue, held placards and shouted slogans.
The founder general secretary of AKRSU, Harmohan Medhi, in his address, said: “Kamtapur state” is a demand of the Koch-Rajbongshi people and not just an issue of the organisation.
“Hence, people of the community have come out to participate in the rally,” he said.
Medhi told this correspondent, “There will be no compromise on the separate state demand during tripartite discussions with the Union and state governments. The Centre has denied tribal status to the community but has invited us for talks on the issues of the community, which is nothing but double standards.”
The All Assam Koch-Rajbongshi Sanmilani, Koch-Rajbongshi Development Council, Koch-Rajbongshi Sahitya Sabha, All Assam Koch-Rajbongshi Mahila Sanmilani and the Biswajit Ray faction of AKRSU participated in the rally.
The president of the All Assam Koch-Rajbongshi Sanmilani, Deba Kumar Saikia, said according to the latest census report, Koch-Rajbongshi population in Assam was 50 lakh.
“So the community can now bring about changes in Assam. Also, there is a genuine ground behind the demand for Kamtapur,” he said.
Advocating equal rights for all communities residing in the proposed Kamtapur state, Koch-Rajbongshi Sahitya Sabha general secretary Kamal Barman reiterated that the organisations would not allow “Gorkhaland“ or “Bodoland” to be created in the proposed territory of Kamtapur state.
He also criticised the alleged divide-and-rule policy of the government towards Koch-Rajbongshi organisations.
After the rally, the leaders held a meeting to discuss their next phase of agitation.
A dharna demanding a separate state will be staged in front of the Assam secretariat in Guwahati in November.