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Assam rebel group NDFB drops demand for 'sovereignty'

K Anurag in Guwahati | October 01, 2008 20:21 IST

The banned Bodo tribal militant group, National Democratic Front of Bodoland has dropped its demand for a sovereign Bodoland and submitted a fresh charter of demands agreeing to find solution within the Indian Constitution through dialogue with the government.

Assam chief minister Tarun Gogoi confirmed on Wednesday that the NDFB which is now in truce with the Indian forces, and had agreed to find solution within the framework of the Indian Constitution dropping their demand for 'sovereignty'.

The senior leaders of the NDFB held discussion with the Centre and the Assam government's representatives in New Delhi [Images] on Tuesday to submit a fresh charter of demands. 

The Centre has extended the truce with the militant group by another three months.

Gogoi said on Wednesday that the Assam government had already made it clear that it would also oppose the NDFB's demand for a separate state for the Bodo tribe. However, the state government is game to extend more autonomy, development funds to the existing Bodoland autonomous council to solve the issue with the NDFB.

The NDFB has been in truce with the government since May 2005. The actual negotiation between the government and the NDFB had failed to take off so far as the militant group has failed to submit an acceptable demands charter to the Central government despite its continuing 'consultation with civil society groups within the Bodo tribal community'.

Hundreds of NDFB cadres are lodged in truce-time designated camps even as the outfit's fugitive commander in chief Ranjan Daimary alias D Nabla continued to remain outside the country.

The NDFB was formed on October 3, 1986. The outfit was originally established as the Bodo Security Force  under the leadership of Ranjan Daimary. On November 25, 1994, the name was changed to the NDFB.

The NDFB was formed with the purported objective of securing a 'sovereign Bodoland' in the areas north of the river Brahmaputra. According to the 'constitution' of the outfit, the objectives of the outfit are to liberate Bodoland from Indian expansionism and occupation, free the Bodo nation from the colonialist exploitation, oppression and domination, establish a democratic socialist society to promote liberty, equality and fraternity and uphold the integrity and sovereignty of Bodoland.

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