On the occasion of the 18th Bodoland Day today, Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal and BTC chief Hagrama Mohilary have reiterated that the BJP-AGP-BPF alliance will continue during the forthcoming BTC elections this year.
Addressing a mammoth gathering at BTC Secretariat field at Kadamtola in Kokrajhar as chief guest on the occasion of the celebration of the 18th Bodoland Day, Sonowal said that now Bodoland has become a shining example not only for Assam and the north-eastern region but the country as a whole as this place has exhibited a record in eliminating the culture of violence and extremism and established a monumental shift towards permanent peace, brotherhood and mutual coexistence through a process of peace settlement.
He reiterated that it is a model surely to be followed by other extremist or underground organisations to come over to the mainstream of progress and development abjuring the path of militancy. He also appeal to the ULFA(I) top brass to join meaningful talks with the government for a permanent solution of the problem and to be a part of Indian democracy.
He also assured that the Bodo Peace Accord has a multi-dimensional approach and nobody is to worry about the outcome of the new Bodo pact. It has been made to accommodate everybody living in the region and everyone is free to exercise their rights. He has also thanked BTC chief Hagrama Mohilary for his able and progressive leadership that has seen the area much developed in a short time.
Sonowal also announced that the victims of Adivasi families who could not be traced for the last 12 years after ethnic violence in this region during 1996 and 1998 will be declared dead and the government shall extend a lump some ex-gratia to the next of kin of the victims’ families with adequate rehabilitation measures.
Speaking on the occasion BTC chief Hagrama Mohilary expressed satisfaction over the initiatives of both of the BJP-led State and Central governments for their all-out support for the development of the BTC area. He also said that almost all the clauses of the BTC Accord of 2003 have been implemented while the only clause to provide ST status to Bodos living in Karbi Anglong district remains to be done which he said is to be completed within a very short time.
Mohilary also announced that out of Rs 1500 crore the region has got, the BTC has earmarked to spend at least Rs 300 crore for the rehabilitation of NDFB cadres. He also ensured that the BPF-AGP-BJP alliance shall form the BTC government in the ensuing BTC elections and work for all-round development in the region.
Keshab Mahanta, minister, said that Kokrajhar Planetarium & Science Centre was today formally handed over to the BTC for public viewing and to inculcate among the students the sprit of scientific culture and innovation. It is the 75th planetarium of the country and 3rd in Assam. At the same time, he revealed that a Science City will come up at Sonapur near Guwahati soon.
ULFA general secretary Anup Chetia addressing the gathering thanked the BTC chief for extending an ex gratia of Rs 1 lakh to each of the 283 ULFA martyrs families of this region. He also appealed to the government to enhance monthly stipend to the surrendered ULFA cadres from the present amount. He also appealed both to the government and the ULFA(I) supremo to come forward for talks in the better interest of the people of Assam.
The Chief Minister inaugurated the newly-constructed Planetarium and Science Centre at Dimalgaon in Kokrajhar. He also handed over awards and citations to the beneficiaries today. Earlier, BTC chief Mohilary inaugurated the newly-constructed building of Economics and Statistics Department at Kokrajhar and he also laid the foundation stone of the Kokrajhar Sports College at Haloadol in Kokrajhar.