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Assam divide slur on Delhi

Guwahati, Nov. 25: The Paresh Barua faction of Ulfa today accused New Delhi of hatching a conspiracy to divide the greater Assamese society by applying the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution.

In an email sent to media houses, the self-styled chairman of the outfit, Abhizeet Asom, said: “The application of the so-called Sixth Schedule of the Indian Constitution as a divisive policy is very apparent. This sort of dispensation brings only temporary rewards.”

The Centre has created Karbi Anglong Autonomous Council, Dima Hasao Autonomous Council and Bodoland Territorial Council under the Sixth Schedule with an aim to give more power to the indigenous people of Assam to decide their future.

Ulfa in its mail gave an ardent call to the Bodos, Karbis, Dimasas and other indigenous people of Assam to join its movement to defeat the conspiracy of the “occupational forces of India”.

“But staying with India and allowing Assam to be divided again or just to avail the meagre advantage of the Sixth Schedule of the Indian statute is bound to create enmity and further bloodshed between our people. Being a part of India’s conspiracy and breaking up of today’s geographical Assam further will not help any of the indigenous people. Such divisions will fulfil the ambitions of a few so called leaders of the clan and this is exactly what is happening in the Sixth Schedule dispensation at present,” the email said.

Ulfa has, however, reiterated that it recognises equal rights for each indigenous person. Assam governor J.B. Patnaik last year said the failure of the Sixth Schedule in delivering justice to the common man had led to disgruntled youths joining militant ranks. Patnaik said in his opinion, the Sixth Schedule had failed to provide justice to the common man.

“Poverty and unemployment are rampant in these areas (under the Sixth Schedule) as a result of which they have become fertile ground of recruitment for insurgency,” Patnaik had said during the valedictory address at the golden jubilee celebration of the Bar Council of northeastern states in the city last year.

The Ulfa mail also stated that the outfit has decided to use the words “people of Assam” instead of “Assamese” to represent bona fide inhabitants of Assam.

“The word ‘Assamese’ has become a limited representative vehicle and the ‘people of Assam’ deemed to more meaningful instead,” Ulfa said.

“The indigenous people rightly or wrongly hold the view that the Assamese-speaking plains people of Assam want to continue to rule over the rest. However, in the event of general consensus by the inhabitants the word ‘Assamese’ is accepted without controversy, we shall be more than happy to re-use it again,” Ulfa said.

The statement, while calling on various communities to “throw off the Indian yoke,” said once that was achieved all would have the freedom to work out a mutual solution scenario or go their separate ways as “sovereign independent states”.

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