Demanding a separate Bodoland state to be carved out of Assam, several Bodo organisations today resorted to rail blockade at Udalguri in the state to revive the Bodoland statehood movement.
The All Bodo Student Union (ABSU), the National Democratic Front of Bodoland (Progressive), the People Joint Action Committee For Bodoland (PJACBM) besides several Bodo organisations blocked rail movement for 12 hours, disrupting train connectivity in the northern part of Assam since early morning.
Over 20,000 people coming from far-flung areas of both Udalguri and Sonitpur districts joined the programme shouting slogans “No Bodoland no rest”, “No discrimination against Bodos will be tolerated”, an official said.
The blockade in Udalguri railway station resulted in disruption of rail communication on the Udalguri-Tezpur- Dekargaon, NJP-Rangapara-Naharlagun sections with trains stopped in different railway stations, officials said.
Coming down heavily on the “discriminatory stand of BJP” at the Centre and the state towards addressing the long pending demands of the Bodo people, ABSU President Pramod Bodo addressing the protesters here said, “we warn the government that no political conspiracy against Bodos will be tolerated”.
Demanding “safety and right of the ethnic Bodo people and a united Bodo nation”, he accused the NDA government of coming to power with a false commitment of solving the Bodoland issue.
“We the joint group were optimistic of resolving our half century long crisis when the national leadership of BJP raised the slogans of ‘Paribartan’ (change) and ‘acche din aane wala hain’ on the eve of the polls before they came to the power,” Bodo said.
“Believing it, we met the national leadership such as Union Ministers Rajnath Singh and Kiren Rijiju repeatedly for the last two and half years. The Bodo organisations also met Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal when he was union minister many a time appealing him to resume the tripartite talks with the Bodo organisations for permanent peace and solution to the unsolved Bodo issues,” he said.
The government is ignoring and undermining the issues as they are engaging in political conspiracy to exploit the marginalised groups and the communities of the country whom they promised to deliver an equitable governance and justice after more than half century of Congress rule at the Centre, he alleged.
“Since we have contribution to the BJP coming to power we had expectations from the BJP regime that something would be done to resolve the Bodo problem. So we waited for the last two and half years without taking up any agitational programme,” he added.