New Delhi, April 24
A delegation of Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) of Assam, led by Member Parliament, Biswajit Daimary today met Union Minister (MoS) PMO, Dr Jitendra Singh and sought his intervention for redressal of their long pending demands including the grant of ‘Scheduled Tribe’ status to Bodo Kachari living in Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao as well as Karbi (Mikr) living in plain areas of Assam.
In a memorandum submitted to the Minister, the members of the delegation requested that a Bill granting Scheduled Tribe status be passed from the Parliament and requested for a sympathetic view on this issue by the Union Ministry of Tribal Affairs.
The memorandum also requested for Special Central Assistance (SCA), pursuant to the recommendations of the 14th Finance Commission which had decided to allocate SCA of Rs. 1000 crore to the Sixth Scheduled Councils during 2015-16.
The memorandum also requested that the SCA provision for Sixth Scheduled Councils for 2017-18 be raised from Rs. 500 crore to Rs. 1000 crore and be continued for another three years.
The delegation also requested special financial package for Bodoland Territorial Council to enable acceleration of the various development projects. They also reiterated that the BTC share of plan fund as agreed in the memorandum of settlement is 12.19% of the State’s Annual Plan allocation on the basis of population ratio, but the funds allocated to BTC during last 5 years were only to the tune of around 3% to 4% of the State Annual Plan.
Since floods and erosion issues constitute a perennial problem in the Bodoland area of Northeast, the memorandum also requested for a permanent solution tothis problem. It requested the Government of India to allocate adequate funds to BTC to deal with devastation and disaster situations.
Dr Jitendra Singh gave a patient hearing to the delegation. He said, since the change of government in Assam, Sarbananda Sonowal led regime has taken a very sympathetic view of all the issues related to Bodoland. He assured the members of delegation that he would put across their issues before the State Government as well as the concerned Ministries at the Centre.