PM Modi to visit Assam on Friday, his first trip after CAA protests began
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will visit Kokrajhar in Assam on Friday to take part in an event to celebrate the signing of the Bodo peace accord last month.
This will be Modi’s first visit to Assam after protests started in December last year against the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA). The protests seeking repeal of the legislation, which are still continuing, had claimed five lives in police firing in the initial days.
Modi could not visit Assam in December for the India-Japan bilateral meet in Guwahati which had to be cancelled due to the protests. The PM was expected visit Guwahati for the opening ceremony of the Khelo India Youth Games last month but that also did not happen.
On Tuesday, senior Assam minister Himanta Biswa Sarma reviewed preparations for the Bodo Accord celebrations in Kokrajhar along with other ministers and bureaucrats.
“We are excited to welcome PM Narendra Modi to this historic event,” Sarma tweeted.
Senior district officials at Kokrajhar, the headquarters of Bodoland Territorial Council (renamed as Bodoland Territorial Region after last month’s accord), said that preparations for Friday’s event is going on well.
“We are in touch with security officials to ensure that the event passes without any glitch. The preparations are going on in full swing,” said Partha Pratim Majumdar, deputy commissioner Kokrajhar.
Around 4 to 5 lakh people from all the four districts under Bodoland Territorial Area Districts (BTAD) are expected to take part in the event, which will include a cultural programme of ethnic groups of the state.
“Cadres of National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB) who laid down arms will be part of the event which will be attended by eminent personalities from the BTAD region,” informed Pramod Bodo, president of All Bodo Students Union (ABSU), one of the signatories of the peace deal.
The Bodo Accord, the third such deal after two earlier ones in 1993 and 2003 was signed at New Delhi on January 27 with leaders of all four factions of NDFB, who were demanding a separate Bodoland state, taking part as signatories.
The deal is expected to bring peace to the Bodo-dominated areas in Assam. With signing of the accord United Liberation Front of Assam-Independent (ULFA-I), which is seeking a sovereign Assam, remains the only major banned militant outfit in the state.
Last week, 1615 cadres of all the factions of NDFB laid down arms in front of Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal at an event in Guwahati.