Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi has invited the All Bodo Students’ Union (ABSU) and the All Koch Rajbangshi Students’ Union (AKRSU) separately to discuss the statehood demands raised by them on Wednesday.
ABSU president Pramod Boro told The Hindu that the Kokrajhar Deputy Commissioner extended the invitation from the Chief Minister for a discussion at his official residence at Koinadhora in the city.
Mr. Boro said that the ABSU would urge the Chief Minister to arrange for tripartite talks between the Centre, the State government and the ABSU on the Bodoland demand within a week. “We are not going to call off the statehood agitation until and unless the Centre starts a tripartite discussion for the creation of a separate State of Bodoland on the line of Telangana,” added the ABSU president.
A 48-hour Assam Bandh called by the ABSU as part of its revived statehood movement affected normal life in Bodoland Territorial Area District (BTAD) for the second consecutive day. He said the ABSU would announce the next course of revived Statehood agitation after the Id.
Mr. Gogoi has also invited leaders from the AKRSU at 10.30 a.m. to discuss its demand for the creation of a separate state of Kamatapur. AKRSU president Biswajit Ray said that the student body would also demand a tripartite discussion with the Centre.
Political parties, including the ruling Congress and the Opposition, on the other hand, opposed further division of Assam. The parties appealed to the government to immediately hold discussions with the organisations spearheading the statehood movement and refrain from any kind of repressive measure.
A meeting of Opposition parties convened by the Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) resolved that aspirations of any nationality or ethnic group could not be fulfilled through further division of Assam. The meeting chaired by AGP president Prafulla Kumar Mahanta alleged failure on the part of the State government to maintain law and order and sought intervention by the Centre.