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Stop making false promises on statehood: Bodos tell Centre

IANS | New Delhi |

The Bodo community members of Assam on Wednesday urged the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led governments at the Centre and in the state to stop making false promises on the separate statehood demand.
Over 5,000 Bodo community members here on Wednesday ended their three-day-long agitation demanding separate statehood.
“The political demand would remain unresolved even if the armed struggle is resolved from the point of law and order situation and recurrence of armed struggle will resume one day or other. Therefore, the attitude of the central government in regards to objective of the genesis of the armed struggle should change,” said All Assam Student’s Union (ABSU) President Pramod Bodo.
The agitation was organised under the banner of ABSU, National Democratic Front of Bodo (Progressive) and People Joint Action Committee for Bodoland Movement (PJACBM).
The three organisations- which are the main force behind the Bodoland demand- also said they would intensify their agitation through indefinite rail and road blockades in several parts of Assam and mass hunger strikes.
“The armed struggle germinated and flared up on the political issue. It is the political problem and should be resolved politically,” Pramod Bodo said.
“There will be no permanent solution if the central government makes an attempt to resolve it as mere a law and order problem,” he added.
On Tuesday, the protestors, who held a rally from Ramlila Maidan to Parliament Street in the national capital, also submitted a memorandum of demands to the Prime Minister’s Office.
“The government created Telangana but now it has started rejecting all those reasons for creating new states just to deny many aspirants for new state,” said a memorandum submitted to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Office.
“The present NDA government is seen to be trying to befool the people by offering economic development as an option to solve political problem,” the memorandum said.
The Bodo community also demanded the prime minister should ensure political rights of the Bodos living outside the proposed Bodoland area.
The Bodos- Assam’s largest tribal community- currently have Bodo Territorial Area Districts (BTAD) comprising of Kokrajhar, Baksa, Udalguri and Chirang in Assam.
Currently, two factions of the National Democratic Front of Bodoland- NDFB(P) led by Gobinda Basumatary, and NDFB led by Ranjan Daimary- are holding peace talks with the central government, while NDFB(S) led by Songibijit I.K. is opposed to holding talks with the government under the constitutional framework.
The Songibijit faction was responsible for the recent killing of 14 civilians in an attack in Assam’s Kokrajhar in August this year, which also left 20 people injured.