Congress, BPF ties to continue in Assam: Digvijaya


Guwahati : The alliance between the Congress and Bodoland Peoples’ Front (BPF) which runs the administration in Assam’s troubled Bodoland will continue, party general secretary Digvijaya Singh said Tuesday amid reports of strain in ties over the arrest of a local council member.

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The BPF is in power in Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) – that runs administration in the four Bodoland Territorial Area Districts (BTAD).

Singh arrived here to chalk out a strategy ahead of the forthcoming panchayat polls in Assam. He addressed Congress workers at the Rajiv Bhavan here.

He, however, reminded the BPF leadership that it is their responsibility to ensure security and safety to all the communities living in the BTAD – the Bodos, the Muslims, Koch Rajbongshis and all others.

“The BPF must also think that if they have come to power in BTAD – it is not due to the Bodo voters alone. The other communities living in BTAD also voted them to power and so it is the responsibility of the elected government in the BTAD to ensure security to all communities and not only to the Bodo community,” Singh said.

Three districts – Kokrajhar, Chirang and Dhubri – had earlier this year witnessed violence between ethnic Bodos and Bengali-speaking Muslim settlers, killing over 100 people and rendering over four lakh people homeless.

Singh also slammed the BPF leadership for raking up the issue of illegal Bangladeshi migrants in the BTAD.

“If the BPF leadership has any details of presence of illegal Bangladeshi migrants in the relief camps in the BTAD, they must hand over the list to the government,” said Singh while adding that the government will take stern action against the illegal Bangladeshi migrants.

Singh also said that the operation against the illegal arms will continue in the BTAD.

His visit assumes significance as the difference between the Congress and its long time ally-BPF had been growing over the last few days – particularly after the arrest of one executive member (EM) of the BTC and withdrawal of house guards from most of the leaders of the council.

Meanwhile, a delegation of the BPF Tuesday met Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi over the developments in BTAD.

BPF leader Chandan Brahma, who led the BPF delegation to Dispur said they have appealed to the chief minister to end the crisis in BTAD. Tarun Gogoi has assured them of taking immediate steps in this regard, Brahma said.