GUWAHATI: Several insurgent groups from the Northeast have appealed to people to boycott the Independence Day celebration and observe a “general strike” on August 15.
“For people who have been undertaking the struggle for self-determination, the celebration of Indian Independence Day has no meaning. We appeal to the people in our region to boycott it and observe a general strike on that day,” insurgent groups Coordination Committee (CorCom) and Paresh Baruah faction of United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA-I) said in a joint statement.
The CorCom is a conglomerate of several rebel groups from Manipur. The outfits asserted that the Northeast secured freedom on the night of August 14, 1947.
The statement said in the aftermath of the departure of the British, Indian Imperialists had utilised “forces and treachery” to colonise many parts of the Northeast.
The rebel groups expressed deep concern on illegal migration of people. They claimed just as the locals got outnumbered in Tripura, the non-indigenous population was growing alarmingly in states like Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh.
They alleged that efforts were being made by elements to forcibly make the Northeast a part of the “Hindutva Empire”.
The extremist groups were critical of the Centre’s abrogating Article 370 from Jammu and Kashmir.
“The recent outrageous act of abrogating Article 370 and bifurcating Jammu and Kashmir without the consent of the people of the state show India’s arrogance and blatant disregard of democratic principles,” the statement said.
It said the fact that the Centre’s policies were dirty were evident from the shutting down of state machinery and house arrest of prominent leaders in Kashmir.
Warning that a similar measure could be taken in the Northeast, they alleged that India was attempting to get a foothold in South East Asia through the Act East Policy.