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Business News/ News / India/  'Matter of joy': Amit Shah after signing peace accord with ULFA; Biswa Sarma hails 'end' of tribal militancy in Assam
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'Matter of joy': Amit Shah after signing peace accord with ULFA; Biswa Sarma hails 'end' of tribal militancy in Assam

The peace pact with ULFA, which is expected to end decades-old insurgency in Assam, comes after 12 years of unconditional negotiations between the ULFA faction, led by Arabinda Rajkhowa, and the government

The pro-talks faction has sought constitutional and political reforms for the protection of the identity and resources of Assam's indigenous people including their right to land.Premium
The pro-talks faction has sought constitutional and political reforms for the protection of the identity and resources of Assam's indigenous people including their right to land.

The United Liberation Front of Assam (ULFA)'s pro-talks faction on Friday has signed a peace accord with the central and Assam governments agreeing to shun violence and join the mainstream.

A 29-member delegation of the ULFA's pro-talks delegation, including 16 ULFA members and 13 from civil society, signed the agreement.

The agreement between the ULFA pro-talks faction and the authorities is a significant step, as now the banned ULFA-Independent is the only major insurgent outfit remaining in the state.

“It is a matter of joy for me that today is a bright day for the future of Assam. For a long time, Assam, Northeast faced violence and after Prime Minister Narendra Modi became PM in 2014, efforts were made to reduce the gap between Delhi and Northeast," said Union Home Minister Amit Shah.

Amit Shah said the ULFA, the oldest insurgent group of Assam, agreed to abjure violence, disband the organisation and join the democratic process. "Assam has suffered for long due to the violence of the ULFA and 10,000 people lost their lives in this violence since 1979," he said.

“Today is a historic day for Assam. During PM Modi's tenure, under the guidance of Union Home Minister Amit Shah, work for Assam's peace was always underway...three accords have been signed and with three accords tribal militancy has come to an end in Assam", CM Himanta Biswa Sarma said.

The separatist ULFA was formed in April 1979 in the aftermath of an agitation against undocumented immigrants from Bangladesh (erstwhile East Pakistan).

The ULFA was formed with the demand for a "sovereign Assam". Since then, it has been involved in subversive activities that led to the central government declaring it a banned outfit in 1990.

ULFA split into two groups in February 2011 with the Arabinda Rajkhowa-led faction giving up violence and agreeing to unconditional talks with the government. 

The Rajkhowa faction joined peace talks with the government on September 3, 2011, after an agreement for Suspension of Operations (SoO) was signed between the ULFA and central and state governments.

Paresh Baruah, who leads the other rebranded ULFA-Independent faction, is against the talks. Baruah is believed to be residing at a place along the China-Myanmar border.

The pro-talks faction has sought constitutional and political reforms for the protection of the identity and resources of Assam's indigenous people including their right to land. The Union government in April sent it a draft agreement. An earlier round of talks between the two sides was held in Delhi in August.

A series of talks with officials concerned in the Central government has taken place since the delegation arrived in Delhi on December 26 before the signing of the pact.

The Union government has signed peace deals with rebel Bodo, Dimasa, Karbi, and Adivasi outfits in Assam over the last three years.

(With agency inputs)

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Published: 29 Dec 2023, 05:37 PM IST
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