SIVASAGAR, Jan 13 � �To preserve the identity of the indigenous tribes and communities as continuous influx of illegal migrants posing a great danger to the existence of Assamese society, Assam should be declared as a tribal state,� said former minister Promode Gogoi today.
Gogoi, while addressing a press conference at the CPI�s party office, said, �If nothing is done now, Assam�s demographic scenario will soon be changed and local people will be outnumbered by the settlers who will dominate the State in all respects. There should be restrictions, as in other states of the North-east which have been declared tribal states on buying and selling of land and property and suspected illegal migrants should not have political rights.�
Demanding inclusion of Assam under Article 371 (A) of the Constitution of India, Gogoi said, �Since Nagaland is under Article 371 (A), she has right over its natural resources. Then why has Assam been deprived of enjoying its natural resources.� Gogoi also demanded inclusion of Assam under Article 370 of the Constitution of India as only Jammu and Kashmir is enjoying this Special Constitutional right.
Urging the State Government to do the necessary paperwork so that six tribes of the State could be declared Scheduled Tribes (P) as recommended by the Parliamentary Select Committee in 1997 and the Assam Assembly, Gogoi said, �This would facilitate the granting of tribal status to Assam.�
The veteran leader also appealed all the political parties, people�s organisations and prominent intellectuals to take up the matter independently and jointly to put pressure on the Government of India to accept the just demand of the people of Assam.