Fresh aftermaths of UPA government’s decision to provide statehood to Telangana showed up in the form of long-standing demands by four-ethnic groups for statehood carved out of Assam with mass violence and agitation in the state.
The ethnic group of Bodos, Karbi and Koch-Rajbongshis have demanded separate states. Karbi Anglong’s witnessed violence with two persons killed and several injured. The All Bodo Student’s Union has observed a 12-hour long rail blockade with several other organisations, including the Bodo Sahithya Sabha, All Bodo Women’s Federation, Bodoland People’s Progressive Front, people’s Joint action Committee for this movement. The ABSU has also called a 60-hour long strike from August 5th to demand a separate state for Bodos.
The United Democratic People’s Front, comprising several Bodo organisations, has called a 1500-hour long strike, the longest ever in the region on the lines of same demand. Karbi Anglong state vandalized the residence of an official at Diphu in Karbi Anglong district.
The National Democratic Front of Bodoland-Progressive and the people’s Joint Action Committee for Bodoland have jointly called a 100-hour long highway blockage from august 13th and will observe a 24-hour long hunger-strike on August 20th at Jantar Mantar, New Delhi.
The All Koch Rajbongshi’s Student’s Union has already began observing a 36-hour long Assam strike from yesterday demanding a separate Kamtapur state which will be followed by a 100-hour hunger-strike and a bandh on Independence Day.
The Hill State Democratic Party has called a 100-hour strike in the hill districts of Dima Hasao and Karbi Anglong from August 5th demanding separate state of Dima Hasao and Karbi Anglong. The HSDP has already observed a 10-hour bandh in Dima Hasao district yesterday demanding a separate Dima Hasao state.
Pramode Boro, President, ABSU, said that, “the decision to create Telangana was impartial. Our long-awaiting demand has been ignored and the identity of Bodos is at stake. We will continue our agitation till our demand for a separate Bodoland is met.”
The PJACBM, comprising of 55 Bodos organisations, has also intimidated the government of intensifying the agitation if the demand for a separate Bodoland state is not met which is more than four-decades old.
Biswajt Roy, President, AKRSU said that if government failed to resolve the issue of a separate Kamtapur state, they would be left with only option of intensifying the agitation.”
Political parties in Assam like AIUDF,AGP AND BJP along with the ruling Congress were opposed to the creation of separate states.
Prafulla Kumar Mahanta, President, AGP, said that, the creation of Telangana would lead to demands for more states in Assam, but any further division would not lead to economic development of the state and its people. The AIUDF, one of the major opposition party in the state assembly, has also stated that it was opposed to any further division of the state
BJP’s Assam unit prsident Sarbananda Sonawal said that his party was not in favour of any further division of the state, but would work for the creation of a greater Assam.
zTarun Gogoi, CM, Assam, who left for New Delhi, also said that the party was not for any further division of the state.
Assam has been divided thrice since Independence with Nagaland carved out in 1963, Meghalaya with the passing of North Eastern (Reorganisation Areas) Act in 1971 and Mizoram, which first became a Union Territory in 1971 and was later made a state in 1985.
Thus, with such an violent demand for separate states among ethnic groups in Assam, it can be clearly said that creation of Telangana has more violence in store amongst ethnic groups of others states in the country. Assam is just the first chapter in the chain of demands for statehood, thus fragmenting India into several states. This would in turn, give birth to various new developmental, economical, political and social challenges to be faced in future.