GUWAHATI, Oct 19 - The Clause 6 panel on constitutional safeguards for the indigenous people of Assam headed by Justice (Retd) Biplab Kumar Sarma today met editors of newspapers and private TV channels for their views and suggestions on the safeguards to be adopted for protecting the land, culture, language and identity of the Assamese people, at the Administrative Staff College here.
It was pointed out to the panel that the success of the Mizo Peace Accord of 1986 was due to the constitutional safeguards provided to the Mizo people to protect their land, language, culture and identity.
Though the situation of Assam was very different from Mizoram due to socioeconomic and political factors, emphasis was laid for protection of land of the indigenous people, immediate halt to transfer of land of indigenous people and return of land to indigenous people.
To check illegal influx from across the borders, it was suggested to seal the Bangladesh border and installation of electric fence. As illegal migrants used the porous Tripura border to enter the Brahmaputra Valley via the Barak valley, effective steps to close this corridor was suggested.
As the Assamese indigenous people were becoming a minority in their own homeland, it was suggested to introduce the Inner Line Permit system on the Assam-Bengal border to regulate entry and exit of people from the Indian mainland entering Assam.
Reservation of up to 80 per cent seats in the Assam Assembly for the indigenous people was suggested to protect the political rights. Similarly, cent per cent reservation of jobs in the fourth grade in State, Central, PSUs and private sector was suggested.
Questions were also raised today on the effectiveness of the panel�s suggestions in view of the Central government�s move to bring in the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016.
The discussion was attended by Justice (Retd) Biplab Sarma, Ramesh Barpatra Gohain, Niloy Dutta, Pallav Bhattacharyya, Subhas Das, Joykanta Sarma, Samujjal Bhattacharyya, Dipanka Kumar Nath, Lurinjyoti Gogoi (all panel members).
Among the editors Ajit Kumar Bhuyan, Haider Hussain, Prasanta J Baruah, Prasanta Rajguru, Dileep Chandan, Munin Bayan, Nitumoni Saikia were present along with others.