R Dutta choudhury
GUWAHATI, March 3 – The Government of India and the pro-talk faction of the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) are trying to expedite the peace talks and the next round of negotiation is scheduled to be held in New Delhi on March 7. The tripartite talks will be chaired by the Union Home Secretary.
Official sources told The Assam Tribune that though the talks are scheduled on all the issues mentioned in the charter of demands submitted by the pro-talk faction of the ULFA, in the ensuing talks issues like rehabilitation of the cadres, updating of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) of 1971, involving the cadres of the ULFA in economic activities like farming, etc., are likely to get prominence.
Sources revealed that the ULFA is keen on involving its cadres in activities like farming and in fact, some cadres have already started such activities in different parts of the State. The militant outfit has also submitted schemes for the same and they have sought Central funds for the same. The Central Government is likely to seriously consider the demand and the issue is to be discussed in the meeting.
The Government of Assam will formulate its strategies for the meeting shortly.
Meanwhile, a senior leader of the pro-talk faction of the ULFA, who refused to be named, said that they are trying their best to expedite the peace talks. He said that during the visit to New Delhi, the members of the militant outfit would try to meet Union Home Minister SK Shinde to apprise him of the demands of the ULFA as “we have not met him since he assumed office as the Home Minister.”
The ULFA leader welcomed the action of ULFA deputy commander in chief Bijoy Chinese joining the peace process and said that everyone is welcome to join the process. He said that Paresh Baruah, the commander-in-chief of the hardline faction of the ULFA, should also come forward for peace talks and on their part, the Central and State governments should create an environment where Baruah can come forward for talks with due honour. “The talks are progressing well and we are trying our best to expedite the process,” he added.