The All India Namasudra Bikash Parishad organised a rally and a convention here on Monday to protest against the demand for a separate “north Bengal” state.
Sanjiban Mondal, the secretary of the central committee of the association of the Namasudra community, said in the past few months, they had noticed that a number of organisations were raising the demand for a separate north Bengal state.
Even a section of legislators who have got elected from north Bengal are supporting it, he said.“Today, through the rally and the convention, we wanted to send a clear message that we would oppose any attempt to divide Bengal tooth and nail,” said Mondal.
According to him, the Namasudra community represents around 40 per cent of the total population of north Bengal. A few weeks ago, Ananta Maharaj, who heads a faction of the Greater Cooch Behar Peoples’ Association, had openly claimed at a meeting that a Union territory would be carved out of north Bengal. Also, some other outfits like the Kamtapur Peoples’ Party (United) and the Kamtapur Progressive Party have intensified their activities on the demand of the separate state. Mondal said a section of leaders had also asserted that the region belonged only to the “sons of the soil”.
“This has left us amid uncertainty as our ancestors have migrated to this part of Bengal. We think the demand can also damage the social fabric of this region. Our organisation will continue to raise its voice against divisive politics. The MLAs and MPs also represent us. They should refrain from backing the demand,” he said after the convention that was held at Dinabandhu Mancha.At the convention, a new central committee of the Parishad was also formed. While Mondal was selected as the secretary, Partha Biswas was elected as the new president, said sources.