Congress MP Demands Separate State in Lok Sabha
By Sushanta Roy
Diphu: Most strange political event concerning Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao district unfolded in the floor of Lok Sabha yesterday when the lone MP Biren Sing Engti representing the twin autonomous districts of Assam demanded creation of a separate state comprising the two autonomous hill districts of Assam.
The old hand of congress party raised the issue of statehood during zero hours to register a strong demand by explaining the relevancy of the popular claim of the 6th schedule aborigine tribes inhabiting in the area.
Engti who maintained a stoic silence regarding the issue all through his twenty-five years carrier as Member of Parliament made a somersault from his usual taciturn attitude at 6.50 PM yesterday. he told the lower house that, if the Central Government is not interested in granting statehood to the two districts itb should immediately implement Article 244(A) of the Constitution which guarantees autonomous statehood to the hill districts of Assam.
The MP maintained stringent balance between district congress demand of separate state in accordance to Article-3 and autonomous state stipulation of JACAS as given in Article 144(A), accumulation of about 14 students and youths organization. Biren Sing Engti spoke for about 10 minutes in the monsoon session of the parliament; he urged the government to be sincere in tackling the 67 year's vexed issue.
"Our MP discussed the issue in detail with both UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister Mon Mohan Sing before raising the matter in the floor of the house, we are a national party so have certain obligation we cannot be irrational like the Bodoland leaders. May be lately but the issue has been raised properly and at exact time," said a district congress leader over phone from Delhi.
Meanwhile a 200 member delegation of congress from Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao is campaigning in Delhi to peruse the matter, after staging a demonstration in Jantar Mantar it will submit memorandum to Prime Minister and union Home Minister tomorrow. The delegation will also meet with senior congress leaders at the office of the AICC and hand over memorandum to party president Mrs. Sonia Gandhi.
Center's nod to JACAS (Joint Action Committee for Autonomous State) for holding negotiation on the issue of Autonomous State consist of Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao district as provided in article 244(A) of Indian Constitution has baffled the advocates of the separate state seekers including the HSDP.
Although the MLA's of ruling congress is still maintaining stillness and have kept their finger crossed from the subject but both the district congress unites of Dima Hasao and Karbi Anglong has not abandon the bandwagon of separate state, every week at the initiative of both the autonomous councils delegation of party activists and elected members of autonomous councils (MAC) are making trip to Delhi to keep the issue animated.
"The whole exercise of congress of demanding separate state in place of autonomous state for the hills all on a sudden from last month and close proximity of the party with rival HSDP ( hills state democratic party) is its election game plan, the matter will be dumped by congress once the election is over and desert its new chum HSDP," said a jitter JACAS member.
Sushanta Roy is a journalist in Assam, India, who photographs and writes about the people, animals and flora of Assam, and the things that affect them. Read more stories by Sushanta Roy.
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