GUWAHATI, MARCH 11: Assam is on the boil after a section of unruly members of a Nagpur based organization attacked the office of the All Assam Students’ Union (AASU) and shouted slogans against the Assam Accord in Dhemaji district’s Silapathar.
The Nikhil Bharat Bangali Udbastu Samanvay Samiti (NIBBUSS) conducted a public meeting on various issues, including the demand for citizenship for Hindu Bengalis from neighbouring Bangladesh on March 6.
After the meeting some members ransacked the office of AASU and shouted slogans against AASU and the Assam Accord. AASU has been opposing the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, which enables a non-Muslim person from neighbouring Bangaldesh who has been persecuted on religious ground, to get Indian citizenship.
According to the Assam Accord which was signed in 1985 with the central government, AASU and Gana Sangram Parishad following a bloody anti-foreigners movement, insisting that anyone who comes after March 25 of 1971 is a foreigner irrespective of caste, creed and religion.
AASU has been demanding the arrest of Subudh Biswas who is believed to be the mastermind of the incident. Various organizations and civic bodies including some of the bodies which represent Bengali people in Assam have come out on the street and expressed their anger.
“This is highly condemnable. This is an attack on the greater Assamese community. At any cost we cannot forgive this. The government must work to nab the culprits as soon as possible and punish them. Till then we will continue our agitation,” said AASU advisor Samujjal Bhattacharya after leading a torch rally in Guwahati.
Subodh Biswas who is the president of NIBBUSS has been declared as most wanted by police and Rs 1 lakh has been announced for his information.
Biswas has been slapped with charges of rioting, unlawful assembly, house trespassing, attempt to murder, mischief and promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth and language. Assam Director General of Police Mukesh Sahay said that police have been taking all possible measures to nab Biswas.
With local television channels displaying the file photographs of Biswas with some of the top BJP leaders of the state and the centre, many believed that he is closely associated with BJP.
“We have seen Biswas with several top BJP leaders including Sushma Swaraj and Bijoya Chakraborty in some of the public programmes. It means that that he is known to the top BJP leadership,” said a student leader.
Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti (KMSS), an influential farmers’ body of the state slammed the ruling BJP government for the incident. KMSS said that it’s a ploy of the government to settle Hindu Bangladeshi people in the state.
“This is the handiwork of the BJP and RSS in their attempt to make India a Hindu nation. They keep on doing this kind of communalisation,” said a press statement of KMSS.
All Assam Bengali Youth Students Federation (AABYSF) and Protection Forum for Hindu Bengalees of Assam also condemned the incident.
“There should be inquiry not only at the government level, but also at the level of conscious citizens to unearth the real motive behind such act. Those involved in the crime should be brought to book immediately and be punished,” said AABYSF president Kamal Chaudhuri.
Ever since the central government brought the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill in September last year, AASU along with other organizations in the state have been opposing it.