Santal Union blocks highway, burns effigy of Hagrama Mohilary in Sonitpur


Amal Nath

Tezpur, January 14: The Sonitpur unit of the All Santal Students’ Union (ASSU) blocked the National Highway-15 and burnt effigy of Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) chief Hagrama Mohilary accusing him of forcing Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal and Assam Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma to pressurize the central government not to pass the Schedule Tribe (ST) Bill that was tabled in the Rajya Sabha on January 9.

Protesters also burnt effigies of Assam Tourism Minister Chandan Brahma and MP Biswajit Daimary.

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Besides, the protesters also demanded scrapping of the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 for the “greater cause of the Assamese community”.

It may be mentioned that the Centre’s plan for the Constitution (Scheduled Tribes) Amendment Bill, 2019, has evoked anger among tribal communities in Assam.

The communities that are proposed to be included in the ST category are Koch Rajbongshi, Tai Ahom, Chutia, Moran, Matak and tea tribes of Assam.

The Assam Government has set up a high-level committee to look into the status of the tribal people before passing the Bill granting ST status to the six communities of the state.