Tuesday, July 05, 2022

Assam Congress blames state, Centre for border troubles

IANS | July 28, 2021 10:16 AM

GUWAHATI:The Assam Congress on Tuesday accused the state and Central government for their "total failure to deal with the inter-state border disputes".

The Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti, headed by rights activist Akhil Gogoi, also demonstrated along the Assam-Mizoram border, with the protesters partially damaging the Mizoram-bound railway tracks.

Assam Congress' newly-appointed working President Kamalakhya Dey Purkayastha said that Monday's violent border clashes have exposed the complete failure of the state and Central governments.

He said that Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma is also the convenor of the North East Democratic Alliance (NEDA), who apparently shares good relations with the Chief Ministers of the other northeastern states, but the reality is different.

Most of the regional parties of the eight northeastern states, including Mizoram's ruling Mizo National Front and Meghalaya's ruling National People's Party, are the members of NEDA, an anti-Congress regional body.

"Mizoram has encroached upon lands in different areas along the borders with Assam. There is no security of for the people. A government which cannot provide security to its own people should resign," Purkayastha, also a Congress legislator, told the media.

The Congress leader said that due to the wrong handling of the border troubles on Monday, the Mizoram police attacked the Assam police and civilians, killing six Assam police staff besides injuring 80 civilians and security personnel.

Congress leader and former state minister Siddique Ahmed said that the border problems with Mizoram, Nagaland and Meghalaya are not new, and they have been further aggravated as the issues have remained unresolved for years.

"We saw Nagaland people attacking Assam police personnel at Merapani, killing several of them. At the time I was the border minister. Our then Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi had made it clear that not one inch of our land should be occupied. This is no longer the case now.

"One-and-a-half years back, when Sarbananda Sonowal was the CM, we saw Mizoram destroy tea bushes in large areas of our land. We were also attacked by mobs armed with machetes," Ahmed told the media at the party headquarters in Guwahati.

He said that former Congress legislator Rupjyoti Kurmi was also recenty attacked when he went to inspect the areas occupied by Nagaland.

Another Assam Congress working president, Zakir Hussain Sikdar, said that Monday's border violence took place only hours after Union Home Minister Amit Shah left Assam.

"People of the state are now questioning whether Shah came to bring peace or cause more troubles? The state BJP, the Central government, the Chief Minister and the Union Home Minister have all failed to deal with the issue.

"It is not important what is written on Twitter and Facebook. Assam police personnel are capable of thwarting the designs of anyone and we have faith in them. It is the skewed policies of the BJP government that is to be blamed for the incident," Sikdar stated.

Several other parties, including the Bajrang Dal, have also staged protests against Monday's border violence.

The Barak Democratic Front has called for a 12-hour shutdown on Wednesday in the three districts in southern Assam -- Cachar, Karimganj and Hailakandi -- to denounce the border violence.

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