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Cong MLAs, MP defy Gogoi, demand separate hill state

Guwahati: Congress MPs and legislators from the two hill districts of Assam – Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao – have taken initiative to launch a forum to demand a separate state comprising two hill districts defying the stand of chief minister Tarun Gogoi as well as the ruling party against further division of Assam in order to fulfill statehood aspirations of many ethnic communities.
All the five MLAs and the lone MP – all belonging to the ruling Congress- from the two hill districts along with other district level Congress leaders and party workers have formed United Forum for Hill State to press for the demand for a separate state carving out of Assam. The two hill districts are under governed by two autonomous district councils as per the provisions of the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution.
Congress MLA and a parliamentary secretary in the State, Dr Monsing Rongpi is the president of the forum. Rongpi said there was nothing wrong with demanding a separate State by dividing Assam. “We are demanding just a state out of Assam, not secession,” Dr Rongpi said.
Two district Congress presidents from both the hill districts and two chief executive members of the Congress-ruled autonomous districts councils in the two districts are the vice-presidents of the forum.
The advisers of the forum include veteran Congress leader and MP, Biren Singh Ingti, Congress MLA G C Langthasa, Congress MLA and parliamentary secretary Bidyasingh Ingleng and Veterinary and Hill Areas Development minister of Assam Kharsing Ingti. Obviously, it makes an all Congressmen forum demanding a separate State out of Assam in sharp contrast to party policy. Aspiration for separate autonomous state in the two backward tribal dominated hill districts of the State dates back to several decades and the demand has now been upgraded to that of creation of a full-fledged State in the wake of Centre’s decision to facilitate creation of Telangana out of Andhra Pradesh.

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