Rajbongshis raise statehood pitch

Students take out a rally in Kokrajhar.

Dhubri, Nov. 16 : The All Koch-Rajbongshi Students’ Union (Biswajit Roy) today launched the first phase of its agitation for a separate Kamtapur state by taking out padayatras and holding meetings in lower Assam districts.
The students’ union took out padayatras in Bongaigaon, Chirang, Kokrajhar, Barpeta and Dhubri districts and submitted memoranda to the deputy commissioners of Chirang and Kokrajhar, demanding that New Delhi and Dispur take immediate steps to carve a Kamtapur state out of Assam and West Bengal.

Hundreds of activists of the students’ union joined the march from Agomoni to Ratiadoh in Dhubri district, from Bengatol to Chapaguri in Bongaigaon district. They held meetings at Chapaguri and Sorbhog in Barpeta and Agomoni in Dhubri district.
The union’s series of agitation will include a sit-in in Delhi on November 25, 12-hour rail and road blockades on December 14 and 27 and a 12-hour Assam-West Bengal bandh on December 30.
The students union and the Separate State Demand Committee, which was formed by various organisations of the Koch Rajbongshis in West Bengal and Assam, have been demanding the creation of Kamtapur state by carving out 15 districts of Assam and six districts of West Bengal.
The president of the Dhubri district of the students’ union, Monoj Roy, while addressing a public meeting at Agomoni bazar after a 10km padayatra from Ratiadoh to Agomoni in Dhubri district, said it was the agitation for their existence and they would go to any extent for the fulfilment of their demands.
“It is the question of our socio-economic and political rights. Moreover, for long we have been deprived by both the states, Assam and West Bengal, but now we want our own homeland for the Kamtapuris,” he added.
The president of the union, Biswajit Roy, said they were not demanding anything new but the area ruled by the Koch dynasty. People living in the areas ruled by the dynasty are Koch Rajbongshis, he said.
“Neither the Assam nor the West Bengal government has treated the community on a par with other communities. As a result, the community is lagging behind in all aspects. The movement will continue till a separate state is carved out,” he added.
In Kokrajhar, the Koch Rajbongsi United Forum organised a rally from Dimalgaon to the office of the deputy commissioner and submitted a memorandum to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh through the DC’s office.
The demonstrators damaged a car belonging to the principal of Kokrajhar Commerce College, R. Singha, near UN Academy on JD Road, injuring the driver of the vehicle, S. Chakraborty. The demonstrators threw stones at the car, breaking its windscreen, and thrashed the driver. The principal was not there at the time of the attack.