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Assam tribal bodies against grant of ST status to 6 communities

The groups resolved to take legal recourse and file writs before the Supreme Court if the Centre and State governments go ahead with granting ST status to the communities.


Assam tribal bodies against grant of ST status to 6 communities

Guwahati: Opposing the Centre's move to grant Scheduled Tribe status to six communities in Assam, 16 tribal organisations on Monday announced launching a series of agitation programmes including bandh and blocking of national highways.

The Coordination Committe of the Tribal Organisations of Assam (CCTOA) held a national convention here, where the organisations vowed to undertake different forms of protests including giving call for an indefinite Assam bandh and blocking the National Highways and railway routes.

"If the proposed reservation is given to the six communities, which do not fulfill the criteria at all, then the existing 14 ST tribes will move further backward," CCTOA Coordinator Pramod Boro said at the convention.

He informed that the organisation has been requesting both the Centre and the state to hold a bipartite meeting with the existing tribal communities, but nothing has happened.

"In 2014, we also supported (Narendra) Modi for 'achche din' (good days). Yes, achche din is coming for the six communities, but it will be 'bure din' (bad days) for the 14 communities," he added.

Boro, who is also the President of All Bodo Students' Union, said Moran, Muttock, Tai-Ahom, Koch-Rajbongshi, Sootea and Tea-Tribes comprise 56 per cent of Assam's total population as per 2011 census.

"These communities have been following the Hindu caste system and have been rightly listed in 'Other Backward Caste' or 'More Other Backward Caste Status'. They do not possess characteristics of tribals," he added.

A joint resolution by all the 16 groups representing the 14 ST tribes said if the six communities are included in the list along with them, then the political representation of the existing genuine Scheduled Tribes will be destroyed once and for all.

"The National Convention unanimously decided to oppose any 'detrimental' political move of the government to include six advanced and populous communities in to the ST (Plains) list of Assam," the resolution stated.

The groups resolved to take legal recourse and file writs before the Supreme Court if the Centre and State governments go ahead with granting ST status to the communities.

"The National Convention also decided to organise awareness drive and launch vigorous democratic mass movement, including National Highway blockade, rail blockade and indefinite Assam bandh if the six communities are granted ST status," the resolution stated.

From Zee News

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