Kokrajhar, Sept. 8: Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) chief Hagrama Mohilary went on the defensive today, saying he never said he did not want Bodoland, following a widespread reaction to his statement on “Bodoland” yesterday.
In a hurriedly called news conference at the Bodoland People’s Front (BPF) office here today, Mohilary clarified: “I never said we don’t want Bodoland. I just said Bodoland was not possible at present, as the Centre has no plans to create more states and that everybody knows that new states will not be created as of now. But I never said we don’t want Bodoland.”
He said he was countering comments made by the All Bodo Students’ Union (Absu) leaders and Bodoland People’s Progressive Front’s (BPPF) leaders Rabiram Narzary and U.G. Brahma about the BPF’s agitation being just a drama. “I was countering their statements. If our agitation is a drama aimed at gaining political mileage, so is theirs.”
Mohilary had yesterday termed the ongoing statehood agitations by various groups and also by those opposing creation of Bodoland as political gimmicks aimed at deriving mileage during the 2014 parliamentary elections. He had also admitted that his demand for a state, too, had a political agenda, like “the others”.
The statement invited sharp criticism from various quarters, with angry youths burning and hanging effigies of Mohilary here today.
One group shouted slogans against Mohilary and burnt his effigy at College Road near KDSA Field here, while another hanged his effigy from the flyover near Hanuman mandir.
Asked by reporters if he would continue with the demand for Bodoland, Mohilary said, “If Telangana can be created, so can Bodoland.”
The Bodo National Conference (BNC) reiterated its stand on statehood today.
BNC chief convener and BTC deputy chief Kampa Borgoyary told reporters here today that the group would “continue with our struggle till Bodoland is created”.
“We want a separate state so that we can develop ourselves, our culture and language, among others, and can live peacefully. Bodoland is the ultimate solution and is of utmost importance for development of the Bodo belt,” he said.
Regarding Mohilary’s statement, Borgoyary said, “If someone has said Bodoland is impossible, it’s unfortunate.”