Centre forms committee to look into Bodoland demand
The Bodos in Assam have long been demanding a separate state called bodoland. And to look into the viability of their demand the central government has recently constituted an expert committee.
Former home secretary G K Pillai has been appointed by the Union Ministry of Home Affairs to study and examine the demand for a separate state of Bodoland.
Pillai will soon visit Kokrajhar to consult all sections of the society on the viability of Bodoland. The committee will submit its report to the Ministry within nine months.
"The Home Ministry had constituted an one-man expert committee headed by GK Pillai, former Home Secretary basically to study or examine the demand of the Bodoland. I would like to clarify first that this committee is still a one-man committee and the terms of reference of this committee are yet to be finalized. We generally give freedom to the chairman to co opt members. Committee was supposed to and is expected to consult each section of the society including the Bodos and Non-Bodos to prepare its report and give recommendations," said Shambhu Singh, Joint Secretary (Northeast)
A 12 member Bodo delegation, comprising representatives from the ABSU, People's Joint Action Committee for Bodoland Movement, United Democratic People's Front and the Bodoland People's Progressive front, was in New Delhi recently.
They held meetings with senior government officials to pitch their demand for a separate state.
"We talked regarding the issue of Bodoland and expressed our demand in front of the government. We said that if Telangana can happen then why not Bodoland. When the constitution of this country is one so what is reason behind justice to one and injustice to other. All the honorable ministers of the government of India and also of the Assam government appreciated our point and called it legitimate. They even put forward their wish to find a solution to this issue," said Pramod Boro, President, All Bodo Students' Union.
Meanwhile, the Bodoland Territorial Council chief welcomed the central Government's decision to constitute an expert committee.
" On behalf of the BNC and BPF, we welcome the notification issued by the Government of India yesterday. We believe that just like Telangana was carved out of Andhra Pradesh, through a similar process, our Bodoland state can also be created," added Hagrama Mihilary, BTC Chief.
The Bodoland territorial council that came into existence after Bodoland Liberation Tigers surrendered to the Indian government in 2003 has been spearheading the movement demanding a separate Bodoland state for the last 46 years.
The past years have also witnessed a spurt in violence in the region by Bodo armed outfits.
The government has been trying to resolve the issue in a peaceful manner and pave way for development of the region.
(Posted on 10-03-2014)