'BJP wants another Godhra in Assam' - Rediff, India
- 'BJP wants another Godhra in Assam'
G Vinayak in Guwahati | May 20, 2005 12:10 IST
Assam chief minister Tarun Gogoi has blamed the
Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh and Bharatiya Janata
Party's Assam in-charge Pramod Mahajan for the recent
exodus of Bangladeshi workers from certain parts of
At least 500 suspected Bangaldeshi nationals working
on brick kilns and pulling rickshaws in Dibrugarh,
upper Assam, left last week after a local nationalist
group circulated leaflets and SMSes urging people not
to employ them.
Talking to media persons in Guwahati on Thursday,
Gogoi said the brain behind the SMS threat was the
He charged the BJP with trying to launch another
Godhra in Assam.
The chief minister's accusation has lent a political
tint to the issue of Bangladeshi residents in the
state, say observers.
Gogoi went to the extent of saying that BJP's state
chief Pramod Mahajan's Assam tours would be monitored
by the government.
He also rubbished a recent report by Governor Lt Gen
(retd) Ajai Singh that said at least 6,000
Bangladeshis enter Assam every day.
Gogoi told Singh to prove his statement with factual
Vigilance groups to stop harassment of 'genuine'
Guwahati | May 18, 2005 1:43:10 PM IST
Guwahati, May 18 : The Assam government Wednesday
announced the formation of vigilance groups to prevent
harassment of genuine Indians in the name of hounding
suspected Bangladeshi nationals from the state.
"The vigilance committees will comprise
representatives of political parties, eminent
citizens, police and members of social organisations
to monitor the process of identification of suspected
Bangladeshi migrants in each and every district of the
state," Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi told IANS.
The formation of the vigilance committees comes in the
wake of reports of harassment of Indian citizens in
the name of evicting illegal Bangladeshi settlers from
Thousands of suspected Bangladeshi migrant workers
have been fleeing Assam for the past week after an
unidentified group distributed leaflets asking them to
leave or face action.
The group has been sending messages through mobile
telephones and distributing handbills asking locals
not to employ "illegal foreigners".
On Tuesday, the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) joined the
chorus of protest by giving an ultimatum to suspected
Bangladeshi nationals to leave Assam by June 7.
"We would not be responsible for any untoward
incidents if they do not leave," the VHP warned in
The All Assam Minority Students' Union (AAMSU), an
influential students' group representing minority
Muslim and non-Assamese speaking communities in the
state, has also called for a 10-hour general strike in
Assam on May 24 on the issue.
"We have reports of harassment and torture on genuine
Indians by unidentified persons in the name of driving
away Bangladeshi nationals," AAMSU president N.U.
"The government should take immediate steps to prevent
such acts as this could lead to communal tension in
Police in eastern Assam's Tinsukia district Tuesday
arrested two people for assaulting some Bengali
speaking road construction workers and forcing them to
leave the state.
"We later found that some of the workers who were
assaulted possess residence proof certificates and
were very much Indian citizens," a senior police
Most of the Bengali speaking workers were engaged by
local contractors in brick kilns, road and building
construction works. A large number of them also pull
Assam shares a 272 km border with Bangladesh, a vast
stretch remaining unfenced, with India often claiming
that large scale infiltration from across the border
was threatening the region's demographic profile.
Dhaka denies charges of illegal infiltration of their
citizens into India.
To know more about Godhra Riots see:
To know more about Bangladesh see:
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