The Telegraph
Wednesday , December 26 , 2012
Since 1st March, 1999
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Minority leader calls for peace

- Stop blame game & work on rehabilitation: Choudhury

Guwahati, Dec. 25: Veteran minority leader Hafiz Rashid Ahmed Choudhury today said he would take the lead role in uniting different political parties and organisations to ensure effective rehabilitation of riot victims in the Bodoland Territorial Areas District (BTAD).

He is considered to be the only minority leader accepted by all sections in the state.

Choudhury who heads the Assam unit of the Samajwadi Party told reporters that he would soon hold a meeting with BTC chief Hagrama Mohilary to start the initiative.

He said instead of blaming each other, everyone should concentrate on bringing lasting peace in the BTAD and proper rehabilitation of those left homeless during the riot.

He warned of a nasty plan to keep the Bodos and the Muslims always divided in the BTAD.

Nearly a hundred people lost their lives and thousands lost their homes and properties because of the riot in the BTAD which broke out in July. More than four lakh people took shelter in relief camps. The state government now claims that less than 40,000 people are staying in the camps.

“The ruling Congress government has done nothing in the name of rehabilitation. The riot victims have gone back home on their own. The riot has affected both the Bodo and Muslim communities. So, politics must stop and a humanitarian approach must be adopted to rehabilitate all genuine victims. The aim is to build confidence among all communities in the BTAD,” Choudhury said.

Choudhury said an effort would be made to unite all non-Congress and non-BJP parties and other organisations like AASU and Absu to build confidence among the people in the BTAD and find out an effective way to rehabilitate the riot victims.

Choudhury said an atmosphere has to be created where the representatives from the Bodos and the Muslim communities can hold talks for lasting peace in the BTAD.

He said the Samajwadi Party would not make the riots in the BTAD an agenda in the ensuing panchayat polls. He said such a sensitive issue should not be raked up and political parties must avoid the issue for the greater interest of society.

“Corruption during the last 12 years of the Congress rule will be our poll issue. It is too early to say how many candidates of the Samajwadi Party will be in the fray,” Choudhury said.

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