TT Epaper
The Telegraph
 
CIMA Gallary

Talks on Bodoland today

- Six pro-state groups to meet govt officials in Delhi

New Delhi, Nov. 26: Six pro-Bodoland groups will hold the second round of tripartite talks here tomorrow with officials of the Centre and Assam government.

The Centre, however, is worried about the communal tension brewing in the Bodoland Territorial Areas District (BTAD) and has alerted the state government.

The alert, sounded by the Intelligence Bureau, comes within days of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh speaking of communal tension in lower Assam at a meeting of directors-general and inspectors-general of police last week.

Incidentally, the group of ministers (GoM) on Telangana is also meeting tomorrow afternoon to pave the way for bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh.

The Bodoland movement gained momentum after the Congress’s declaration in July on formation of Telangana.

Tomorrow’s talks are crucial in the face of rising communal and ethnic tensions in the BTAD.

“Intelligence reports have warned of a build-up in communal tension. We have written to the Assam government that this is undesirable,” a source in the home ministry said today.

All Bodo Students’ Union president Pramod Boro blamed the Tarun Gogoi-led government for a complete “failure” of law and order.

Boro, who arrived in New Delhi this evening, said the Absu would demand intervention of top officials of the home ministry into the matter.

He said a meeting with the Assam Muslim Students Union and the Bengali Youth and Students Federation yesterday had prevented the tension in the area from going out of hand.

“We did not talk of Bodoland but agreed to ensure peace and harmony,” said the student leader.

He said since it was harvesting season as well as time for students to prepare for exams, peace has to be ensured by all communities.

He said 25 abductions and killings of members of all communities have taken place in the past three months.

The Absu, the Bodoland People’s Progressive Front, the United Democratic People’s Front and the People’s Joint Action Committee (PJACBM) for Bodoland Movement will hold talks in the morning.

Officials will then meet the Bodo Peoples’ Conference followed by the Bodoland Peoples’ Front.

The first round of talks among Bodo, Koch-Rajbongshi, Karbi and Dimasa groups was held in September.

A PJACBM member, Jebraram Moochahary, said the groups would ask the government not to “waste time” and come up with concrete proposals.

With Telangana on the anvil, ethnic groups in Assam and elsewhere are waiting to capitalise on what they see is an opportunity to achieve their political goals for separate states.