ULFA says it can check illegal migration from Bangladesh

first_imgThe United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) wants to do what the Border Security Force has allegedly failed to — check illegal migration to Assam through the Bangladesh border.Eight leaders of the outfit, who met the Centre’s interlocutor A.B. Mathur along with Home Ministry and Central intelligence officials in New Delhi on Monday, proposed the raising of an unarmed battalion comprising ULFA cadres to form a second line of defence along the border.The ULFA claims to have about 2,000 members in ceasefire mode.“There are reports that BSF personnel take money from Bangladeshi people to allow them in illegally. We told the Centre only indigenous people, passionate about protecting their homeland, can do the job of checking infiltration sincerely,” ULFA general secretary Anup Chetia told reporters after the discussion towards a formal peace accord. “We have proposed the creation of an unarmed battalion comprising our boys as a second line of defence to stop people who slip through BSF’s vigil. This will also provide rehabilitation for our cadres,” he said.Mr. Chetia said the peace talks that began in 2010 would lead to the disbanding of the ULFA after a few issues are sorted out. These include withdrawal of cases registered against the outfit’s members ever since it was formed in 1979 to fight for Assam’s sovereignty, Scheduled Tribe status for six ethnic communities and ensuring land rights for Assam’s indigenous people.The outfit had in 2011 submitted demands to the Centre seeking amendment to the Constitution for protecting the rights and identity of the indigenous people. The demand has gained currency after protests over the Centre’s bid to push the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill of 2016. The peace deal with ULFA is expected to be sealed before the 2019 polls but Centre is reportedly keen on inking it soon to isolate the Paresh Baruah-led ULFA (Independent).last_img

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