Why recognising Six communities in Assam as ST may spell trouble for Modi
Prime Minister Narendra Modi decision to consider a proposal to recognise six communities in Assam as Scheduled Tribes (ST) may spell trouble for many within the ST community as well as the general category .
Surprisingly this is a demand strongly backed by the Ulfa whose leader Arup Chetia was recently extradited and its commander in Chief Paresh Barua is in talks with Sri Sri Ravi Shankar .
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Kirran Rijiju the union Home Minister was quoted saying "The file related to granting ST status to six communities in Assam is now with the Prime Minister. After his approval, the proposal will be placed before the Union Cabinet and then the Parliament,"
According to the proposal, the six communities in Assam are Moran, Muttock, Tai Ahom, Koch Rajbongshi, Sootea and Tea Tribes.
"This will be done before the next year's assembly elections in Assam," Rijiju stated and it is obvious that they are doing this with an eye towards the next years poll in Assam
However there are fears amongst many tribes that inclusion of six more communities will take away a major share of jobs as well as reservations in schools and collages .'We do not welcome this' says Geethartha Mohilary adding that we would be happy if one time package is given to them but reservation is unacceptable as it will be from our share ' this 3rd year student from Assam University .
But for the time being the ruling Congress party is keeping quiet ,though one spokesperson said that promises by Modi before elections are normal .'What happened to his package during flood ' the partisan questioned ,even this (inclusion of 6 tribes) cannot be just decision but ratified through Parliment or atleast after complying with legal guidelines which states the Reservation cant exceed a certain limit.
Some BJP members however think that this step will help increase the Saffron parties base in the autonomous areas as well as the tea planters section of the society.For years these have been a Congress base.
While the Assam elections are 6 months away ,it seems that just like Bihar the politics of ethnicity and caste have already begun-only in the Northeast this is under a garb of Tribalism .