New Delhi: Army Chief Gen Bipim Rawat has warned that Pakistan is behind what he calls 'planned' influx of people from Bangladesh into the northeast.
"A planned immigration is taking place because of our western neighbour. They will always try and ensure that this area is taken over, playing the proxy dimension of warfare," Gen Rawat said, talking about the influx of people from Bangladesh into the northeast.
Migration from Bangladesh is due to two reasons. One, they are running out of space. Large areas get flooded during the monsoon & they have constricted area to stay: Army Chief General Bipin Rawat (21.02.18) pic.twitter.com/Cwoc3Xg7lS
— ANI (@ANI) February 22, 2018
Gen Rawat said that it is part of a proxy warfare by Pakistan, which is getting support from China with an aim to keep the area disturbed.
"I think the proxy game is very well played by our western neighbour, supported by our northern border (China) to keep the area disturbed. We will continue to see some migration happening. The solution lies in identifying the problem and holistically looking at it," he said.
Gen Rawat also referred to reports of an increase in Muslim population in several districts of Assam.
The influx of illegal Bangladeshis is a major issue in Assam and the state government is now coming out with a national register of citizens to find out those living illegally in the state.
"There is a party called AIUDF. If you look at it, they have grown in a faster time-frame than the BJP grew over the years," he said while referring to the BJP winning only 2 seats in 1984.
"The AIDUF is moving at a faster pace in Assam," he added.
The AIUDF, which was formed in 2005 with an aim to champion the cause of Muslim community, currently has three parliamentarians in Lok Sabha and 13 legislators in the state assembly.
He made these remarks while addressing a conference on bridging gaps and securing borders in the northeast region.
The Army Chief said that solution to the problem lies in ensuring the development of the region by taking a holistic approach.
"I do not think you can now change the population dynamics of the area. If it was five districts to eight to nine, inversion has taken place whichever be the government," he said while referring to reports that Muslim majority has increased from five to nine districts in Assam.
Rawat called for the need to "amalgamate" the people living in the region and "slowly identifying' those creating trouble for us".
He added that the Centre is looking at the northeast in correct perspective, and if that happens, time will not be far that the government will be able to amalgamate the region and ensure development.
''And with development comes the control of the people who are residing in this area," he said.
Shrinking land space in Bangladesh and the yearly floods are the main reasons for migration from the Asian country, he said.
(With PTI inputs)