The BJP-led government in Assam sees Friday’s Kokrajhar killings as an attempt to derail peace and development in Bodoland Territorial Area District (BTAD), ruled by the Bodoland People’s Front (BPF) since 2003.
BPF, an ally of the BJP, was part of the Congress government in the state from 2006 to 2014. Most of the leaders of BPF were members of the now-disbanded Bodoland Liberation Tigers that had often fought with rival NDFB for territorial control. National Democratic Front of Bodoland-Songbijit (NDFB-S), believed to have carried out Friday’s killings, is a splinter group of NDFB.
“The cowardly attack on unarmed people was a bid to destabilise our government and derail the peace prevailing in BTAD for quite some time now. We will try to see justice is done,” Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal said.
The BJP or its allies have ruled out any political conspiracy, since the militants had been disruptive during the 15-year Congress rule, nine of them with BPF. The NDFB-S wants secession of the Bodo-inhabited areas of Assam that, according to them, stretches beyond BTAD.