The five-day National Highway blockade launched by the Bodoland movement groups like the All Bodo Students Union(ABSU), National Democratic Front of Boroland-Progressive(NDFB-P) and People”s Joint Action Committee for Bodoland Movement (PJACBM) began at 5 am on Wednesday.
Hundreds of activists of the three organisations and public gathered at Karigaon in Kokrajhar and carried out the blockade from 5 am paralysing the movement of traffic along the National Highway 31-C that connects the Northeastern States with the rest of the country.
The movement groups are demanding tripartite talk at political level for a permanent solution to Bodoland issue, ensure political rights of the Bodos living in Assam outside proposed Bodoland and immediate grant of ST status to Bodos in Karbi Anglong district.
ABSU President Pramod Boro criticised the BJP-led government saying that the BJP leadership had promised and gave commitment in both verbally and in written in its election manifesto during the last parliamentary election in 2014 to resolve the problems and issues raised by the tribal and backward communities and also to “resolve the demands for creating separate state in different parts of India including Bodoland and Gorkhaland if they would be voted to form a government in New Delhi”.
Boro said this is the fourth year of the BJP regime but “they totally forgot their commitment. The government of India is doing quite contrary to what the BJP leadership had promised before the election of 2014 which is a treacherous act on the part of the government”, he said.
The ABSU President said that in response to repeated pressure of the Joint Movement Group the Government of India held a political level tripartite talk under the Chairmanship of Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh in his office of North Block, New Delhi on April 26, 2017, in which Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, Industries Minister Chandra Mohan Patowary and all the top bureaucrats of the Home Affairs Ministry took part.
“The joint movement group explained all the grounds and justifications for creation of Bodoland. Without saying much Rajnath Singh assured to continue the dialogue as frequently as possible saying that dialogue helps in finding out the means for solution. Dialogue was held in an interval of two to three months during the UPA regime. So, we were happy that talk would continue and the means for solution of the longstanding demand for Bodoland State could be sorted out soon. To our great dismay it is already one year passed but no dialogue has so far been held,” stated Boro.
“This is another act of deceit and treachery of the Government of India. Therefore after Betrayal Day as well as Black day organised to show our regret with the Government of largest democratic country of the world by shaving our hairs and putting black badge in our shirt on April 26, 2018 we felt more ignored and resorted to this rigorous mass movement through the 5-days National Highway blockade at different places of proposed Bodoland area from today,” added Boro.
The student leader made it clear that the Bodos will never keep mute for the right to live with dignity, identity and preservation of its language and culture. “We are determined not to give up the demand of Bodoland nor the political movement unless we achieve the goal and through this agitation of 5 days National Highway Blockade we place our fundamental demand to hold tripartite talk at political level to resolve the Bodoland Issue at the earliest,” he added.