All four organisations of the Chutia community on Wednesday unitedly appealed to the major political parties to select only candidates of the community in places where the Chutia population dominated to contest in the Assam Assembly polls 2021.

The four Chutia organisations including Chutia Yuba Chatra Sanmilan, Chutia Jati Mahila Sanmilan, Chutia Yuba Sanmilan and Chutia Students’ Association in a press meet on Wednesday warned that if the BJP, AGP or Congress fail to select a candidate from their community they would field own candidate as Independent.

Lambasting successive governments including the present BJP led one, the leaders said Chutias have not seen any development and are even more backward than what they had been during the British times.

Referring to the provisions of the Simon Commission in 1925 for the protection of ethnic communities, the Chutia leaders said that post-independence, no government had bothered to ensure the political and economic empowerment of the Chutias.

A member of the students’ body said the BJP had promised to constitute an autonomous council for the community but despite forming a high-level committee at the Centre to work out the modalities, nothing has come out.

The member further said the demand to include them in the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution as was being demanded by five other communities of Assam for SC/ST status has also not yielded any results.

The Chutias were still languishing in the Most Other Backward Class category.

The member further said chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal kept on talking about a Rs 125 crore economic package for all-round growth and development of the Chutia community but not a paisa was seen of this money.

Smita Bhattacharyya

Smita Bhattacharyya is Northeast Now Correspondent in Jorhat. She can be reached at: triptyaddy@gmail.com