KOKRAJHAR, July 22 - Road traffic on the National Highway 31-C in Kokrajhar district was disrupted this morning for nearly three hours following the blockade of the highway at Karigaon by members of the Adivasi National Convention Committee (ANCC), a conglomeration organisation of under-ceasefire militant outfits and other Adivasi bodies. The organisations are demanding Scheduled Tribe (ST) status to the Adivasi community.
Hundreds of Adivasi people thronged Karigaon with banners, festoons and placards for the blockade beginning from 9 am. They also shouted slogans, demanding ST status.
The ANCC alleged that both the State and the Centre have been playing politics on the issues of the Adivasis for a long time. It expressed resentment over the tardy pace of the process to grant ST status to the community. The committee will be compelled to take strong measures if its demands are not met soon, Birshing Munda, ANCC secretary, warned.
The blockade was lifted at 12 noon after the district administration gave an assurance that the demands of the community would be intimated to the Government. The ANCC also submitted a memorandum to the Prime Minister through the Kokrajhar Deputy Commissioner in this respect.