GUWAHATI – In the aftermath of violent protests in Arunachal, a convention of Assam’s student tribal organisations held on Tuesday(Feb 26)have formed a political platform named ‘Tribal Political Action Committee, Assam’ for the tribal peoples of the State. The purpose o is to unite the movements of the State’s tribes and to chalk out a common programme for these movements.
The convention condemned the bid of some forces to frustrate the Arunachal Pradesh government’s move to issue permanent resident certificates to the Deuris, Misings, Sonowal Kacharis, Morans, etc., living in that state.
It urged all organisations, leading citizens, political parties and autonomous councils of the State’s tribal people to unite against the government’s move to accord Scheduled Tribe (ST) status to the six ethnic groups in Assam. It has also demanded steps to form a commission for the development, propagation, spread and preservation of the cultures and languages of the indigenous tribal groups of the State.
The convention formed a 13-member ad-hoc committee of the Action Committee, appointing All Bodo Students’ Union (ABSU) president Pramod Boro as its chief convenor.
The convenors of the ad-hoc body are the presidents of the All Rabha Students’ Union, All Tiwa Students’ Union, All Assam Tribal Youth League, All Assam Garo Students’ Union, All Assam Deuri Students’ Union, advisor to the All Dimasa Students’ Union and general secretaries of All Mising Students’ Union, All Assam Madahi Students’ Union, All Assam Sarania Kachari Students’ Union, Karbi Students’ Association and All Barman Kachari Students’ Union. All Assam Tribal Sangha general secretary Aditya Khakhlary has been appointed its chief advisor.
The convention demanded that the political parties operating in Assam state categorically in their election manifestoes for the ensuing Lok Sabha polls that they would work for the protection of tribal belts and blocks, implementation of The Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006 and ensuring the voting rights of the indigenous residents of 535 villages of Sonitpur and Biswanath districts in the panchayat elections.
It also demanded that the political parties assure that they would work for filling up the 12,155 posts reserved for the scheduled tribe candidates of the State, excluding the tribal belts and blocks, the revenue villages of the Rabha Hasong and Tiwa Autonomous Council, and also for including the Tiwa, Mising and Rabha autonomous councils in the Sixth Schedule of the Indian Constitution, among others.
The convention called for steps to rehabilitate the tribal peoples affected by flood, erosion, urbanisation and expansion of the national highways in the State.
It also demanded steps to exclude the tribal candidates from the State appearing in the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) examinations from the MIL and Eighth Schedule Language papers.