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Assam: Draft of peace charter to be given to ULFA

By K Anurag
January 18, 2011 18:54 IST
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After successfully mobilising public opinion to favour the release of senior leaders of the banned United Liberation Front of Asom to facilitate talks with the government, the Sanmilita Jatiya Abhibartan, a forum of leading citizens and civil society organisations, has now started preparing the charter of demands that the outfit can present ahead of the peace talks. 

It is now clear that ULFA under the leadership of its chairman Arabinda Rajkhowa has dropped the precondition of initiating peace talks -- a demand for sovereign Assam.  

According to a source in the SJA, the forum will chalk out a charter of demands for ULFA by engaging a group of experts from various fields. The demands will cover almost all the burning political, social and economic problems that have been the root cause of resentments among various ethnic groups and insurgency in the state.

The SJA has constituted six sub-committees headed by various professionals, technocrats, economists, educationists, agriculture scientists, to prepare the draft of the charter. These panels are expected to submit their reports to the SJA steering committee by January 31 next so that the fine-tuned charter of demands could be handed over to ULFA leaders for consideration.

The basic issues that are being considered while preparing the charter of demands for ULFA included illegal migration from Bangladesh, more autonomy to Assam, right over land and its resources, problems of various ethnic groups, economic planning, agriculture and rural development and burgeoning unemployment.

The SJA was formed on April 24 last year to create public pressure on both ULFA and the government of Assam to start a peace process to end the insurgency problem in the state.
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