Tribal organisation files FIR against authors for ‘defaming Bodo community’

Guwahati/Kokrajhar, August 7: The United Tribal Organization, Assam (UTOA) has filed an FIR at the Kokrajhar Police Station against the authors Sanjoy Hazarika and Romila Thapar. The UTOA also demanded a ban on two books authored by Hazarika and Thapar.

The UTOA alleged that the authors defamed the Bodo community in their books Strangers No More: New Narratives from India’s Northeast (Aleph Book, 2017) and Ancient Indian Social HistorySome Interpretations (Orient Blackswan, 1978).

The FIR was lodged on August 4 and a case has been registered with vide no. 390/2018,u/s 3(1)(p) (r) (u) Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes (prevention of atrocities) act 1989 (Amendment 2018). This was informed by Markush Basumatary, president, UTOA, on Tuesday in Kokrajhar.

“We demand a complete ban on these book with immediate effect. They (authors) have defamed our community. This is an insult to the entire Bodo community,” Basumatary said.

Thapar, an Indian historian, is the author of several books including the popular volume, A History of India. She has twice been offered the Padma Bhushan award but has declined both times.

On the other hand, journalist-author-activist Hazarika, formerly a member of the first National Security Advisory Board, is now part of the National Commission to Review the Working of the Constitution. He has also set up a Centre for North East Studies and Policy Research.