GUWAHATI: The formation of a literary body “Assam Islamic Sahitya Sabha” on the basis of religion has ruffled the feathers of several organisations, including that of the Muslims.
The Sabha’s birth came to light after it had issued a statement two days ago announcing its upcoming conference at Adabari in Lower Assam’s Nalbari district from March 13-15. The conference will be preceded by a meeting of the Sabha delegates in Guwahati on January 12.
The Sabha has been formed with retired government officer Iftikar Hussain as president, Raijuddin Ahmed as working president and Fazlul Karim Qasimi as secretary.
The Assam Sahitya Sabha is the state’s highest literary body and it has members from all communities. As such, some organisations, including All Assam Students’ Union (AASU), are miffed that a literary body has been formed on the basis of religion.
Suspicions galore the Sabha is the brainchild of the state’s BJP-led government to divert the attention of people from the ongoing protests against controversial Citizenship (Amendment) Act.
“There has never been the division of people or society on the basis of religion in Assam where people across communities have worked for the state’s development. It is despicable that when an agitation is going on against the amended citizenship law, a religion-based literary body has sprouted suddenly,” AASU president Dipanka Nath told journalists.
AASU general secretary Lurinjyoti Gogoi warned that the students’ body would not accept the division of the society on the lines of religion or the creation of a communal atmosphere in the name of religion.
The Assam Sahitya Sabha is perplexed on the Sabha’s formation based on religion. It said it would lodge a protest. The All Assam Goria-Moria Yuva Chhatra Parishad, an Islamic students’ wing, is also critical of the Sabha’s formation.
“It is condemnable that some people have formed a literary body on the basis of religion. It is a conspiracy and we will not allow them to succeed,” the Parishad said.
Meanwhile, right-wing “Hindu Kranti Dol” has slammed Barkhetri MLA, Narayan Deka, the chief patron of the Nalbari conference, for “sacrificing” his religion and culture for alleged vote-bank politics. Adabari falls under his constituency. He clarified that the Sabha made him the chief patron without taking his consent.