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India interested only in military solution: ULFA
K Anurag in Guwahati | April 19, 2008 19:13 IST
The proscribed United Liberation Front of Asom has accused the government of being interested only in a 'military solution', not a political one, to the vexed ULFA insurgency in Assam.
In the latest issue of its mouthpiece Freedom, a copy of which was e-mailed to mediapersons in Guwahati on Saturday, the banned insurgent group said, "The government of India doesn't seem to be keen enough to begin talks with the ULFA to resolve the conflict between Assam and India through the process of dialogue. India is rather applying all efforts for a military solution on the demand for a sovereign Assam."
"India is not interested in resolving the problem through dialogue and recently on this issue, they are maintaining an absolute unyielding stand. As things stand today, peace talks are nowhere in the offing. The government of India is most certainly sitting pretty with the assessment that the ULFA has been facing severe reverses in recent months and that the question of peace talks will arise once the ULFA is cornered. This approach of India will certainly lighten the hopes of resuming the peace process," the ULFA said
The government of India has been persistently saying that talks with the ULFA wouldn't be possible unless the outfit drops its pre-condition that the dialogue be focused on its demand for 'restoration of sovereignty of Assam'.
The outfit in its mouth piece further said that its team of negotiators, the People's Consultative Group was set up in 2005 as it was keen on bringing about a peaceful political settlement to the conflict.
The PCG held three rounds of talks with the government of India. "We have to trust the PCG because of its emphasis on Assam's national interest. But on the contrary, Indian authorities are opting for military solution of the problem," it said.
The ULFA alleged that commanders of Indian Army had been trying to belittle the PCG initiative saying that peace talks were still miles away and it was quite natural given that those enjoying privileges under 'occupational Indian rule' were disheartened by the developments.
The ULFA claimed that during the third round of talks between the PCG and the government of India, a joint memorandum was published specifying that both India and ULFA would try to create a congenial atmosphere for dialogue but 'the government of India did not honour the commitment it made and violated the decision within short span of time.'
"On the other hand, ULFA restrained itself in the greater interest of the solution. ULFA engaged mediators for dialogue because they gave importance to the peace process. However, it became apparent from the opinions and attitude of the government of India that the objective of the dialogue was ceasefire not resolution of the conflict. Now, the Indian military commanders are claiming that by applying force Assam can be kept under India and hence, they keep on saying that there is no need for the government to weigh the dialogue option," the insurgent group said.
The ULFA also fired a broadside at politicians in Assam for not being genuinely interested in facilitating dialogue between the outfit and the government of India.
"These politicians never forget to touch on the issue of dialogue before any election or when there is a just cause for their personal and political gains," the outfit said.