Sonowal vows to uphold interests of indigenous people

GUWAHATI: Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal has pledged to make all possible efforts to safeguard the interests of the indigenous people, reiterating that the government has come to power with the mandate of the people.

Referring to the “misinformation” campaign unleashed by certain organisations on the proposed Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 Sonowal said, “While people pay outmost respect to movements led by the non-violent values of Mahatma Gandhi, misinformation always lends negative impact in society and such campaigns are always discarded by people.”

He also said that though several governments came to power in the state and Centre after the Assam Accord in 1985, no government has made any tangible effort to implement clause 6 of the Accord for safeguarding the constitutional, legislative, administrative interests of the indigenous people.

“The present central government has for the first time taken pragmatic steps for implementation of clause 6 by constituting a high-level committee and also taking steps for granting ST status to six communities of the state. Such efforts would go a long way in protecting the interests of the indigenous people of the state,” Sonowal said during the inauguration of a new branch of Sri Sri Auniati Satra and Cultural Centre at Bandardewa in Lakhimpur district on Sunday.

He further reassured that the state government would not take any step that would harm the interests of the indigenous people.

On the newly established branch of Auniati Satra, the chief minister said that it would boost age-old relations between the people of Assam and Arunachal Pradesh.

Sonowal also expressed hope that the Vaishnavite centre would play a pivotal role in promoting the values and ideals of Mahapurush Srimanta Sankardeva and his contributions towards development of Assamese art and culture.

Underlining the inherent strength of the Assamese society, nurtured by spiritual teachings, social and humanitarian values of Srimanta Sankardeva, he said the robust foundation would never succumb to the evil designs of anti-social forces.

“Satras established in different parts of the state have always been guiding the Assamese society during thick and thin and acting as a great source of inspiration for reinforcing brotherhood and unity in the society,” he said.

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