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Rail roko for 'Bodoland state' hits train service in Assam

Bodo activists block tracks during their protest in Assam
GUWAHATI: Movement of trains came to a halt in several parts of Assam on Tuesday owing to rail roko agitation by All Bodo Students' Union (Absu), People's Joint Action Committee for Bodoland Movement (PJACBM) and NDFB(P) to press for a separate state of Bodoland.

Raising slogans against the BJP-led government at the Centre, thousands of activists of the three influential Bodo organizations squatted on rail tracks in Kokrajhar and Dhekiajuli in Sonitpur for hours, seeking a separate Bodoland state and also political rights for the Bodos living outside the proposed Bodoland region. The 12-hour blockade led to cancellation of seven passenger trains. Twenty other trains were brought to a halt in various locations of lower and western Assam.

"During the 2014 Lok Sabha election campiagn, the BJP leadership promised us that they would resolve the grievances of the Bodos if voted to power. The promise was reflected as a commitment in the BJP's election manifesto. Now, it's the duty and responsibility of the BJP leadership and the Union government to implement the election commitment. Unfortunately, the government has adopted a delaying tactics," said Absu president Pramod Boro.

In a memorandum to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the protesting organizations said many indigenous groups in the northeast are facing a threat to their identity and the Bodos are no exception. So, creation of a separate Bodoland state has become inevitable, they added. "For the survival of our identity and existence, there is no alternative to Bodoland state," read the memorandum. 

Source: TOI

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