Guwahati: A 12-hour Assam bandh called by various non-Bodo organisations on Monday in protest against the Centre’s move to sign a peace accord with different Bodo stakeholders has brought life to a standstill in the four districts under the Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC).
Official sources told PTI that normal life has been affected in Kokrajhar, Baksa, Chirang and Udalguri districts but the bandh did not have any impact in other areas of the state.
Apart from burning of tyres in some areas in Kokrajhar district, no major incident of violence has been reported so far, police said.
All educational institutions remained closed though some examinations scheduled in the colleges were held.
Vehicles, including long-distance buses, remained off the roads and all shops and business establishments were shut. Railway services remained unaffected so far with all major trains running on schedule, a Northeast Frontier Railway (NFR) spokesperson told PTI.
The bandh has been called by various organisations including the All Koch Rajbongshi Students’ Union (AKRSU), All Bodo Minority Students’ Union (ABMSU), All Adivasi Students’ Union, Oboro Suraksha Samiti, Kalita Janagoshti Students’ Union among others.
The non-Bodo organisations are demanding that all non-Bodo stakeholders residing in the Bodoland Territorial Administrative Districts (BTAD) and the banned Kamtapur Liberation Organisation (KLO) should be included in the peace talks and made signatories to the accord that is likely to be signed on Monday.
The Centre held discussions with the Bodo stakeholders, including four factions of the NDFB, All Bodo Students’ Union (ABSU) and the People’s Joint Action Committee for Boroland.
NDFB(R) chief Ranjan Daimary, sentenced to life imprisonment for his involvement in the Oct 30, 2008 serial bomb blasts, was granted interim bail for four weeks by a specially constituted Division Bench of the Gauhati High Court and taken to New Delhi on Saturday to take part in the peace talks.
Assam minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Saturday said that the Centre has assured the state government that the areas under the BTAD will not be declared a Union Territory and no new areas will be added to it and that the state’s territorial integrity will be maintained.
Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal also left for New Delhi on Sunday evening to participate in the talks.