‘Appropriate time for government to resolve Bodoland crisis’

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The All Bodo Students’ Union (ABSU) on Wednesday sent lakhs of postcards to Prime Minister Narendra Modi demanding the creation of a separate Bodoland state. People from all walks of life including students, guardians and intellectuals, gathered at different places writing postcards to the Prime Minister on the issue of creation of a separate Bodoand state.

Participating in the programme in Kokrajhar, ABSU general secretary Lawrence Islary said that the BJP in its election manifesto in the last Lok Sabha election, made a bold commitment to bring about lasting solution of the long pending Bodoland issue, following which the entire Bodo mass extended unconditional support to the BJP, resulting in the party winning seven seats in the State. Islary said the ABSU sought direct intervention of the Prime Minister and a concrete policy decision for lasting solution of the Bodoland issue, and to hold talks with all movement groups at a political level and chalk out tangible policy strategy aiming to reach the point of lasting settlement of problems immediately so that peace can prevail.

The ABSU leader said the Bodo people had great hopes and expectations that the NDA government would initiate a concrete political process to arrive at an actual solution of the problem. “But after one year of the BJP in power, only a round of tri-partite talk, that also at bureaucratic level on  June 9, was held, where nothing concrete came out,” the ABSU leader said.

The ABSU general secretary said that during the talk, it was clearly stated by the key representative of the Government of India that the political level was the only competent level to decide such a political issue like Bodoland statehood and therefore, the matter would be placed before the concerned minister. “As we understand the status of the present peace process, it is the appropriate time for the government to take a concrete policy decision and resolve the decade-long Bodoland crisis. The statement made by the bureaucrats during the talk was an expression of true limit of jurisdiction set for talk of that level for taking appropriate decision on such political issue. Therefore, we feel it necessary to initiate a process at political level and arrive at ultimate decision to concede the demands acceptable to all,” he said.

The ABSU general secretary also said that in the long nine years of negotiation with the NDFB (P), no concrete formula has been evolved by the government and hence the situation had further deteriorated. He opined that it was a welcome trend that almost all the extremist outfits, except a few, had expressed their willingness to have a negotiated settlement of the Bodoland problem. He said that it was now a concerted voice of both civil society and the extremist organizations in ceasefire that for peace and progress a negotiated settlement is a need of the hour.

“But it is a matter of great regret that such a generous approach of the movement groups has not been paid due impetus and taken as the advantage to resolve the issue. Such an apathy and dilly-delaying tactics on the part of the government in settling such a sensitive issue is complicating more the prospect of peace and prosperity in the region,” he said. The Sentinel, 15 July 2015.

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