Sanjoy Ray

GUWAHATI, Feb 5: The Hmar Peoples’ Convention (Democratic), Assam region, which had laid down arms in 2012, has rued the apathetic attitude of the Central and state governments and expressed unhappiness over the non-appointment of any interlocutor, saying it has affected the pace of the tripartite parleys.

The group, while asserting that the leadership and cadres are running out of patience, warned that they might be forced to take drastic steps if the demands are not met in a time-bound manner.

The HPC(D) has demanded that the ongoing tripartite political dialogue involving the Central and state governments be brought to its logical conclusion at the earliest, and cautioned that the dilly-dallying is slowly but surely creating an environment of mistrust.

It also demanded that a Hmar Autonomous Council be created in Assam under the provisions of Article 244 (2) and Article 275 (1) of the Constitution of India comprising the core and satellite areas of Hmar villages as may be specified by the government.

It is also pressing for inclusion of Hmar tribes of Cachar district in the Scheduled Tribe list.

“Despite seven rounds of talks, there isn’t any amicable solution in sight. Our demand seeking comprehensive rehabilitation for the cadres has to be addressed,” HPC(D) chairman David L Hmar told The Assam Tribune.

“After senior Assam Police official Pallab Bhattacharya made his way last year, no interlocutor has been appointed, which has made us apprehensive about the fate of the parleys,” the HPC(D) chairman said, adding, “We have still some hope left with the government. But if nothing comprehensive comes out within a specified period, we may have to explore other options.”

The HPC(D) had submitted a charter of demands on January 24, 2012 in pursuance of the unilateral ceasefire declared by it with the Union government and the state government on December 9, 2011, leading to its laying down of arms on January 24 before the then Union Home Minister P Chidambaram.