4.50 lakh Garos in Kamrup and Goalpara districts want to stay with Assam: Garo Development Council
As many as 4.50 lakh people of the Garo community living in 545 border villages in Assam’s Kamrup and Goalpara districts have unitedly decided to stay with Assam, even as Assam-Meghalaya try to resolve the inter-state border dispute amicably.
The chairman of the Garo Development Council (GDC) Alex K Sangma, on October 30, said, “We have demanded that the boundary that was demarcated during the creation of Meghalaya in 1972 should be honoured by both the states. More than 4.5 lakh people living in Kamrup and Goalpara district are with Assam, and they do not want to merge with Meghalaya.”
“We don’t want Assam’s land to be given to Meghalaya. Similarly, Meghalaya’s land should not be transferred to Assam in the name of resolving the inter-state boundary row,” Sangma further said.
Sangma added that he held a series of meetings with the people of Chandubi and Hahim in presence of senior Assam Minister Atul Bora on Saturday on the matter, and the people of these areas too have echoed similar sentiments.
Besides the Garos living in the border areas, Sangma also deliberated on the large Nepali population facing similar issues. “There is also a sizeable population of the Nepali community along the Assam-Meghalaya boundary. They too want to stay with Assam,” he added.
Sangma is spearheading a movement for a “Satellite Autonomous Council” for more than 8.5 lakh Garo people of Assam. The masses’ movement is being carried out under the banner of the “United Garo Autonomous Council Movement Committee”. The Assam government had constituted the Garo Development Council (GDC) last year.
Notably, the population of the Garo community is 6,91,765 in the Brahmaputra Valley, while more than 2 lakh people Garo live in the Barak Valley.
The inter-State boundary dispute, however, continues in the areas of Pilingkata and Maikhuli as the Garo Students Union (GSU) demands proper inspection of boundary areas lines before demarcation of the inter-state boundary.
On October 5, Meghalaya Minister Renikton Lyngdoh Tongkhar and Assam minister Atul Bora led the cabinet-level committees and jointly inspected the disputed boundary areas between the two States.
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