During his visit to Kokrajhar, while addressing a gathering, Amit Shah said that the violent period of terrorism has ended and a peace and development age has begun in the entire Northeastern region and Jammu and Kashmir to fulfill the dream of the Prime Minister for a new India and ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’.
Addressing a gathering in Kokrajhar in western Assam, bordering West Bengal, Shah said that violence in Jammu and Kashmir was tamed with the repeal of Article 370, while the violent period ended in the Bodo Territorial Area (BTR), comprising four districts of Kokrajhar, Chirang, Baksa and Udalguri with the historic Bodo Peace Accord.
“With absolutely no violence and a huge number of people exercised their franchise both in the District Development Council polls in Jammu and Kashmir (in November) and in the Assam’s Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) polls (in early December),” he said.
Shah said that the BTC polls’ success is a semi-final and the BJP would win comfortably in the final match –- Assam Assembly elections, likely to be held in April-May.
On Sunday, the Kokrajhar Public Rally was organized in New Delhi to mark the first anniversary of the signing of the Bodo Peace Agreement with the Central Government in the presence of the Shah on 27 January 2020.
In all, 1,615 cadres from four factions of the National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB) laid down their weapons after the signing of the agreement on January 30 last year.
The Home Minister said that during the many years of terrorism, over 5,000 people were killed and now absolute peace has prevailed in the BTR and adjacent areas since the historic Bodo Peace Accord was signed and over 80 percent of people cast their votes in the BTC polls last month.
The Union Minister, promising to fulfill all the provisions of the Bodo Agreement, said that peace had been established and that not only in Assam, but also in the entire Northeast region, rapid development was now underway.
More than 700 members of various outfits have laid down their arms and ammunition and have entered the mainstream of life.
Narendra Modi is the first Prime Minister to visit the countries of the Northeast 40 times so far. All of this illustrates how the area is given priority by the Modi government,” said Shah.
He said that the Rs 5,000 crore package was being introduced in the BTR and adjacent areas as part of the Bodo deal, while welfare and development schemes were being launched for both Bodo and non-Bodo individuals.
After last month’s elections, the ruling BJP and its new partners, the United Peoples’ Liberal Party (UPPL) and the Gana Suraksha Party (GSP), took over the governance of the 40-member BTC.
Shah said the BJP’s performance in the next Assembly polls would be easier as the UPPL has become part of the NDA Assembly (National Democratic Alliance).
The former national BJP chief said that violent activities took place in BTR and other parts of Assam during the Congress-rule and no development was undertaken, but both the Center and the State BJP governments initiated unparalleled development and welfare schemes and projects in Assam.
The meeting was attended by Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, State Minister of Finance and Health Himanta Biswa Sarma, who is also the convener of the BJP-led anti-Congress regional party alliance—North East Democratic Alliance (NEDA), UPPL President and BTC Chief Executive Member Promod Boro, among others.
Sonowal handed over Rs 4 lakh each to 1,279 surrendered cadres of the NDFB last week (January 19) at a function in Guwahati.
Meanwhile, in the December BTC elections, the ruling BJP battled against the Bodo Peoples’ Front (BPF) amid Assam’s joint ruling since 2016 along with the Asom Gana Parishadadad Parish (AGP).
This time, the Hagrama Mohilary-led BPF, which has ruled the BTC since 2005 after the tribal autonomous body was formed in 2003 as a political solution to Bodo agitation for a separate state, won 17 seats, while the BJP secured nine seats as opposed to one in 2015, bagged 12 seats by the UPPL.
Gana Suraksha Parishad and the opposition Congress managed to get one seat each.