The Hills State Demand Council (HSDC) and the CPI(ML) Liberation have extended their unconditional support to Congress candidate Biren Singh Engti in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls from No. 3 Autonomous District (ST) parliamentary constituency.
Addressing a press conference at District Press Club here on Friday, secretary of the Hills Party Committee of CPI(ML) Liberation, Robi Kumar Phangcho said, “BJP is in power at the Centre, state and in the two autonomous councils of Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao, but there is suppression of the common man.”
“The BJP government has not provided opportunities to the common people and their rights are not protected. Their plans and programmes are only meant to benefit the corporate houses,” added Phangcho.
The Autonomous District (ST) parliamentary constituency will go to polls in second phase on April 18.
The CPI(ML) Liberation leader also alleged that the BJP government has taken away the land rights of the dalits, Adivasis and the hill tribes.
“Due to demonetisation, daily wage earners and pity traders have suffered. Prices of essential commodities have increased. In its manifesto, the BJP has clearly stated that if it comes back to power, the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 will be re-introduced.” said Phangcho.
Commenting on the BJP’s stand on construction of Ram Mandir and abrogation of Article 370 in Kashmir, Phangcho said, “The RSS and BJP are trying to convert India into a Hindu rastra.”
“The BJP this time has knowingly ignored Article 244(A) for granting autonomous state to the three hill districts. They are silent about the six communities demanding ST status but have sought interests in granting ST (H) status to the Bodos living in the hill districts, which is a policy to create mistrust and conflict between different tribes and communities in Assam,” said Phangcho.
The HSDC and CPI (ML)Liberation have been looking for a consensus candidate who could defeat the BJP but no came forward to the plea.
“So, the HSDC and CPI (ML)Liberation have decided to support the Congress candidate to defeat the BJP. We have urged all anti-BJP parties and organisations to come together to defeat the fascist BJP,” he said.
Replying to a query on whether there is any condition of supporting the Congress, CPI (ML) Liberation secretary Phangcho further said, “We don’t say Congress is good, but they are not anti-tribal as the BJP. The BJP, if comes to power, will pass the CAB and introduce Uniform Civil Code in the country which is against the tribal people. We have no pre-condition to support the Congress. The Congress will defeat the BJP.”
HSDC general secretary Laichan Engleng said intact votes of HSDC-CPI(ML)Liberation supporters will be more than 50,000.
“In the last parliamentary election, CPI(ML)Liberation secured 12,000 votes. Apart from HSDC-CPI(ML) Liberation, other 16 social organisations are with us against the BJP. So, the total votes would be more than 50,000,” Engleng said.
HSDC president Selawor Bey and Karbi Nimso Chingthur Asong (Left faction) president Pratima Enghipi were also present at the press conference.
The election manifesto of CPI(ML) Liberation was also released.