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Kamatapur, ST issues gain momentum again

By Correspondent

BONGAIGAON, June 16 � The Biswajit Ray faction of the All Koch-Rajbongshi Students� Union has decided to intensify its agitation on the demands of Kamatapur and scheduled tribe status for the Koch-Rajbongshi community.

�We will launch a violent agitation if the NDA Government in Delhi fails to address our demands of scheduled tribe status within the next six months and Kamatapur issue by 2015,� said the student body�s president Biswajit Ray talking to the media here on Sunday.

Ray also demanded immediate resumption of talks initiated by the earlier UPA Government. �We want the talks to begin again by August 15 this year,� he said.

An AKRSU delegation will leave for Delhi on June 28 to stage demonstrations in the national capital during the coming Parliament session to remind Prime Minister Narendra Modi�s Bharatiya Janata Party that had promised to address the issues of Kamtapur and ST status to the Koch-Rajbongshi community in its Lok Sabha poll manifesto.

Ray urged the ruling NDA Government not to betray the Koch-Rajbongshis like the Congress-led State Government and the earlier UPA Government. He also called upon Union minister Sarbananda Sonowal to present his latest stand on the ST issue of Koch-Rajbongshis as he had allegedly opposed the demand in 1996 through the leaders of the Tribal Student Federation.

�Since AKRSU(B) is an active organisation of Koch-Rajbongshis, the government should hold any discussion relating to the community only with it,� Ray said, adding, they have not yet formed any parent body for the community to hold talks with the government on behalf of the community.

Levelling allegations on some Koch-Rajbongshi leaders, Ray demanded that the State Government should dissolve the Koch-Rajbongshi Development Council immediately because it has brought benefits to only some �individuals� instead of the general Koch-Rajbongshi people.

Meanwhile, another Koch-Rajbongshi organisation named Kamatapur Association has focused its discussion on the �separate Kamatapur� issue during its two-day third annual central conference, organised here from June 14. The first annual Bongaigaon district conference of the organisation here also deliberated on this very issue earlier.

The newly formed 27-member central committee of the Kamatapur Association has Uttam Kumar Ray as the president. �Our main focus is a separate Kamatapur and we have left the ST issue to AKRSU to handle,� he said.

A total of 55 delegates from Chirang, Kokrajhar, Udalguri, Dhubri and Bongaigaon districts had attended the conference.

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