Bodo Insurgency in Assam: New Accord and New Problems

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  • October 2003

    Assam, one of the seven states of the northeastern region of India, has long remained one of the most volatile and sensitive regions in the country because of the problems of insurgency, ethnic conflict, pressure of migration, underdevelopment etc. Bodos, the largest plains tribe of Assam started an armed struggle for a separate state in the mid-1980s. This armed struggle led to ethnic cleansing of the non-Bodos along the north bank of the Brahmaputra. The Bodoland Autonomous Council (BAC) Accord was signed in 1993 and the Bodoland movement became more violent during the later part of the 1990s. In February 2003, the Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) Accord was signed to end the one-and-a-half decade long bodo movement. The success of this new Accord will solely depend upon proper implementation of its changes and the cooperation between the Bodo and non-Bodo communities. The non-Bodos within the proposed BTC area are opposing the new Accord, as under the modified Sixth Schedule of the Constitution it provides special facilities to 25 per cent of the Bodos at the cost of 75 per cent non-Bodos within the proposed BTC area. This new Accord under the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution may give birth to some new ethnic problems in Assam.

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