United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) chairman Arabinda Rajkhowa on Sunday described the ongoing peace talks between the outfit and the Union government as the “the last opportunity to protect Assam's identity,” and appealed to the people to stand united to ensure that the opportunity was not lost.
The ULFA chairman claimed that the insurgent outfit successfully placed before the Centre the issue of “Assam's sovereignty,” and urged the people of Assam not to be misled by any campaign that the outfit had given up the core issue.
Mr. Rakhowa made these statements in a media briefing immediately after the arrival of the seven-member ULFA delegation led by him at the Lokapriya Gopinath Bardoloi international airport here on Sunday night from Delhi, after submitting to the Union government the outfit's framework for negotiations.
Charter of negotiations
The “framework of charter of negotiations to resolve the issues between Assam and India” submitted by the ULFA delegation to the Union government states: “The United Liberation Front of Assam reiterates that the ongoing issues between Assam and India can be honourably and meaningfully resolved peacefully only by a fresh look at the issues of sovereignty, so as to ensure that the people of Assam can assert their inalienable rights to control their land and their resources therein, which they inherit and occupy from their forefathers, for securing their honourable existence and for developing the economy and the society of their State, according to their needs and aspirations, and also to protect their own identity and develop themselves according to their genius. The people of Assam today feel insecure in their own traditional homeland and have been left far behind. To achieve such objectives, ULFA proposes that negotiations be initiated between India and the People of Assam to bring in measures constitutional and other wise of wide scope and that certain urgent political, economic, social, cultural arrangements be undertaken and completed within a reasonable time-frame by the Government of India to ensure a peaceful democratic solution of the historical Indo-Assam question.”
Keywords: ULFA-govt peace talks