This thread explains the situation prior to partition. Now let’s take an extensive look at the situation & discriminations that the native Assamese have faced into their own country due 2 appeasement, stupidity, political correctness, & vote bank politics.
Assam has been mentioned in religious epics like the Puranas, and also in the Mahabharata. In the epic Mahabharata, it was referred to as the land of Kirats with Pragjyotishpur as its capital.
Huen Tsang, the great Chinese traveler, visited this region in the 7th century (640 AD) when the kingdom of Kamrupa was under reign of the powerful king Bhaskarvarmana (594-650 AD).
Huen Tsang, the great Chinese traveler, visited this region in the 7th century (640 AD) when the kingdom of Kamrupa was under reign of the powerful king Bhaskarvarmana (594-650 AD).
The largest influx, however, took place after 1900 when migrants from East Bengal moved further east of the Goalpara district in Brahmaputra valley. They spread into the Barpeta subdivision of Kamrup district, Nagaon district and to the Mangoldoi sub-division of Darrang district.
The Bengali Ms reclaimed thousands of acres of land, cleared jungles along the south bank of the river Brahmaputra, and occupied flooded lowlands along the river. Among these migrants, the largest group hailed from the Mymensingh district of East Bengal
1905, the British Viceroy of India Lord Curzon divided Bengal into two provinces;
namely, East Bengal and West Bengal. Assam was amalgamated with the M majority state of East Bengal. This move further encouraged the M laborers to move to Assam from East Bengal.
By 1911, Assam reverted to being a separate province under a Chief Commissioner & by this time, 118,000 migrants had moved into the district Goalpara alone representing 20 % of the population. In the next two decades, they moved further up the Brahmaputra valley for settlement.
After Noakhali riots in E Pak in Oct 1946 & partition in 1947, there was a steady & continuous exodus of Hs from Pak to Assam. The district which sheltered the largest number of refugees ws Cachar due to its proximity to Sylhet, from which the majority of the refugees came.
The Census of 1951 puts the migrant number in Cachar at 93,177. The next largest group of 44,967 refugees came to Goalpara, followed by Kamrup (42,871), Nowgong (38,599), Darrang (18,853), Sibsagar (7,514) and Lakhimpur (13,965).
In the hills division, too, there was an influx of migrants from East Pakistan: United Khasi and Jaintia Hills (5,990) followed by Garo Hills (5,072) and United Mikir and North Cachar Hills (1,943)
Following the partition of India in 1947, about 274,455 people entered Assam as refugees but they were mostly Hindus, although most of the Ms who migrated to East Bengal after partition returned to Assam after the Nehru-Liaquat Pact also known as the Delhi Pact of 1950.
Patel was in opposition, nonetheless, Nehru went on. The pact was another blow to the Hs, who were betrayed by their own nation and its leader. In the false hope of getting equal rights in East Pakistan the Hindu refugees, numbering around 600,000 were sent back to their doom.
(Acc to Roy Chowdhary) around 100,000 Ms from East Pakistan came and settled permanently in Assam.
What happened to those Hindus who went back?
During 1964, brutal anti-H riots erupted across East Pak which forced Hindus to flee assault, murder, kidnapping, robbery and also atrocities on women. These people settled in different parts of North-East India and in West Bengal
Acc to Hazarika, there were anti-M backlashes in these parts of India and it also spread to the state of Bihar in northern India. The riots in both countries were so severe that the Home Ministers of India and Pakistan had to hold talks in Delhi.
In the meantime, the deportation of migrants from E Pak in Assam was in full swing. The then Prime Minister of India Jawaharlal Nehru requested the then Chief Minister of Assam Bimala Prasad Chaliha to slow down deportation or even to stop it.
but Chaliha refused to do so by arguing that if deportation was stopped, the demography and culture of Assam would be changed permanently. This led to the breakdown of the Delhi talks. Fortunately, however, the violence stopped eventually (Hazarika, 2000).
In 1965, a full-scale war broke out between India and Pak over Kashmir which led to a large number of refugees fleeing to India from East Pakistan. For these refugees, two bordering states in India, Assam and West Bengal in the immediate proximity, were the logical destinations.
Moreover, they were accorded the comfort of cultural and linguistic similarities. It is estimated that due to the pogroms of late 1960s in East Pakistan and the 1965 war, one million people came illegally to India, of which 920,000 were Hindus (Hazarika, 2000, p., 30)
Soon after the war of 1965 the government of Pak enforced the Enemy Property Act, now known as the Vested Property Act in Bangladesh. This Act gives the right to the state to confiscate the properties of the minorities who they deem to be an enemy of the state.
The Act had a devastating effect on Hindus resulting in out-migration on a large-scale
During the sixties due to the pogrom of the Pak government and also the India-Pak war of 1965 a large number of people from East Pak migrated to India.
Their numbers stood 920,000, most of them being Hindus (Hazarika, 2000). However, the largest single movement of East Pak nationals took place during the 1971 war, which led to the liberation of Bangladesh from Pak.
This period around the 1971 war is considered the peak period of migration from Bangladesh (Datta, 2004).
Most people think of 1971 war as a war in which India helped our Bengali brethren who were against Pak and thus created an ally, who saw Kafirs of India as brethren. Nothing can be further from the truth.
Not only the East Pakis who were freed to form a new nation were the same who inflicted countless atrocities on Hindus during partition but he very Mujibur Rehman was one of the leaders of the pogroms. Even after the liberation of Bangladesh, the persecutions didn’t end.
The people of East Pak were dissatisfied with the central government as they felt that they were being neglected and discriminated against by West Pak.
Out of frustration they joined forces with Sheikh Mujibur Rahman (who later became the first Prime Minister of Bangladesh) and his Awami League party, which won a landslide victory during the election of 1970.
This ended as it always does when you try to take power in a M country using democratic means. The West Pak was determined to teach lesson to the ‘filthy Bengalis’ (As ordered by 1 Pak general).
This ended as it always does when you try to take power in a M country using democratic means. The West Pak was determined to teach lesson to the ‘filthy Bengalis’ (As ordered by 1 Pak general).
A whole generation of educated Bengalis were simply wiped out from the face of the earth. Mass scale massacres were the order of the day.
Samantha Power wrote that the civil war in E Pak resulted in genocide, about 1 to 2 Mil ppl in Bangladesh were killed and 200K girls and women wer ill-treated and about 10 mill ppl crossed the border and took refuge in India. This was then the largest refugee group in the world.
Nonetheless with the help of Mukti Vahini, the Indian army did liberate East Pak to form a new Bangladesh in 1971, December. But did the matter end there?
Soon after the birth of Bangladesh in December 1971, the problem of repatriation of the refugees arose. As per the Indira-Mujib pact of 1972, all refugees who entered India before March 25, 1971 were allowed to stay in India (Upadhay, 2001).
As a result, as many as 7 Mill i,e, about 80 % of refugees, returned to Bangladesh. Some refugees who returned to the new country found that their properties had been occupied by someone else. This forced them to return to India within one or two years (Pramanik, 1990).
In the absence of any effective mechanism to prevent further infiltration, the Indira-Mujib pact could not be implemented and the large-scale influx of Bangladesh nationals to various states of the country continued unabated.
Occasionally the Union Ministers would express concern on this issue, but no serious effort was ever made by any of the leaders to stop the infiltration (Upadhay, 2001).
After liberation, Bangladesh adopted a secular constitution. The four pillars of the constitution were nationalism, democracy, socialism and secularity.
After the assassination of the first Prime Minister Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in August 1975 there was a change in leadership and with the change in the leadership on April 23rd, 1977, the Fundamental Principles of State Policy was altered by the 5th amendment.
Then, by a decree the Principle of secularism was removed from the permeable of the constitution; instead, the preamble was preceded by Islamic religious principles. Again on June 7, 1988 by the 8th amendment of the constitution ‘Islam’ was declared as the state religion.
Although Islam was declared as the state religion, there were no interferences by authorities in Hindu religious activities although the atmosphere of insecurity and harassment has continued by criminal elements of society, forcing minorities to flee from Bangladesh.
The same act of Pak, as mentioned above, Enemy Property Act was enacted as Vested Properties Act in Bangladesh.
This was also the case with protected tribal groups. One such community in Bangladesh was the indigenous tribal population in the Chittagong Hill Tract (CHT).
Chakmas, (usually Buddhists by religion) were the majority among the tribal in the CHT.
Other notable ethnic CHT groups: Marma, Tripura, Tonchungya, Chak Paukho, Mru, Murung, Bawn, Lushai, Khyang and Khumi. More than 85 % of CHT population was Buddhists and 10% were Hindus at the time of partition of India & had a land link with Assam, yet CHT was awarded to Pak.
The people of CHT hoisted the Indian flag on August 15, 1947 to celebrate the Independence Day, but later, to their dismay they were now a part of East Pak.
The first constitution of Pak in 1956 had recognized Chittagong Hill Tract as ‘Special Area’, but later in 1964, the influx of Bengali M settlers took place as a part of the ‘state policy’ (Chakma, 2009).
Eventually, the special autonomous status was revoked by the government of Pak and the area was then made open to all (Chakma, 2009).
Thus, distinctive tribal identity had started to erode in the CHT. Several ethnic riots followed led to 60,000 Chakmas fleeing to India and Burma
Among them, about 20,000 were settled in the North East Frontier Agency (NEFA), a district of Assam then by the government of India (Saikia, 2005). NEFA is now a separate full-fledged state in India, named Arunachal Pradesh.
After liberation of Bangladesh, people of CHT had hoped for political recognition and demanded some autonomy within the state of Bangladesh, but were refused by the new government (Chittagong Hill Tract Tribes of Bangladesh, 2008).
There were confrontations between the govt and the indigenous people that lasted for 22 years, until the signing of a peace treaty in 1997 (Parveen and Faisal, 2002). As a result of violence a large number of people from CHT fled to Eastern India, especially Tripura for shelter.
In 1987, an agreement was reached between India and Bangladesh to repatriate the refugees, but acting on various pleas from international human rights organizations, the government of India suspended the planned repatriation (Chittagong Hill Tract Tribes of Bangladesh, 2008).
July, 1979 the All Assam Student Union (AASU) and the newly formed body All Assam Gana Sangram Parishad (AAGSP) launched a mass movement in Assam with 3 broad objectives 1) detection of illegal immigrants 2) deletion of their names from voters lists 3) deportation of illegals
There were a number of talks between the central government and the movement leaders over the foreigners’ issues; the primary disagreement was on the cut-off date for detection and deportation of illegal migrants.
Although the center had agreed on deportation of illegal migrants with the movement leaders, it was, however, firm on the 25th March 1971 as the cut-off date for deportation as against the 1951 cut-off date as demanded by the movement leaders.
In 1983, Foreigners Act 1946 was replaced by Illegal Migrants (Determination by Tribunals) Act, in Assam. This Act further complicated the detection of illegals as the burden of proof of citizenship lied on the complainant not on the accused which was contrary to Foreigners’ Act
Aug 15, 1985 the Assam Accord was signed bw the central government, and the Agitation leaders and 25 Mar, 1971 was agreed as the cut-off date on both sides for detection & deportation of foreign nationals. So anyone who entered prior to that was now a permanent citizen.
Several issues were discussed in the Accord, such as: the base year for detection and deletion; deportation of illegal migrants;
economic development of the state; safeguard of culture, language, identity and heritage of Assamese people; improvement in education,
science and technology; issuance of citizenship certificate; secured international border to prevent infiltration;, introduction of relevant laws to prevent encroachment of tribal lands in tribal belts and blocks, and to maintain the birth and death registries.
Act defines an Illegal Migrant as the one who is a foreigner who entered India on or after 25th March, 1971 without valid documents such as Passport or valid travel documents or any other lawful authority on their behalf.
The Act was discriminatory as it had been made applicable only to the state of Assam; while other Indian states like West Bengal, Tripura or Meghalaya who were facing similar problems were not enforced with this law
But this was of no help as well, because as mentioned above, Illegal Migrants (Determination by Tribunals) Act rendered it toothless.
The Illegal Migrants (Determination by Tribunals) Act, also referred to as IMDT Act, was passed by the Parliament of India in 1983 to undermine the on-going anti-foreigner movement in Assam (Hazarika, 2000).
It is an extra-ordinary piece of legislation imposed on Assam, in that it makes Assam the only state that is exempt from the FA 1946, which granted the govt certain powers in relation to foreigners in India and was enacted by the Central Legislative Assmbly on 23.11.1946.
Sec 9 of the Act states that, if the nationality of a person is not evident as per sec 8 of the act, the onus of providing proof of citizenship lie on the person accused and the government may by order make provision, prohibit, regulate or restrict entry of foreigners into India
The IMDT Act, drafted by Abdul Muhib Majumdar, a lawyer as well as an established politician from Cachar district of Assam, is specific to Assam and runs counter to the Foreigners Act 1946 in several aspects.
As per the IMDT Act, the Foreigners Act of 1946 can only be applied to foreigners with valid Passports who have overstayed in a foreign country, not for illegal migrants in Assam.
The IMDT Act spelt out a lengthy and complicated procedure for filing a complaint against any person suspected to be an illegal. Due to its enactment, the process of detection, deletion from the voters’ list and deportation of illegals remained as slow as in the pre-accord days
The 16 Tribunals in different districts of Assam located about 10,000 illegal migrants but only 1,400 have been deported in 17 years between 1983 and 2000 (Hazarika, 2000).
Through this Act, the government of India has systematically projected itself both as the protector of Assam’s identity and the minorities at the same time, through legal and political moves (Baruah, 2008).
On one hand it signed the Accord by accepting the key demands of the Movement knowing well that the IMDT Act would act as a barrier to its implementation, and on the other hand, it could present itself as the protector of the minorities by implementing the IMDT ACT (Baruah, 2008)
The IMDT Act helped the Congress party win elections in Assam except in the years of 1986 and 1996 when it lost its grip on power to the newly-formed Asom Gana Parishad (AGP), a political party which comprised the Movement leaders who signed the Assam Accord on August 15, 1985.
IMDT Act and the rules (i) a declaration by another person residing in the same jurisdiction as the applicant, (ii)) declaration that the particulars mentioned in the application are true to his knowledge, information and belief, and (iii) a fee of 10 rupees.
Since the enforcement of the Act only 1,494 illegal migrants had been deported from Assam (Saikia, 2005).
The Act was nullified by the Supreme Court of India on July 7, 2005 and the Foreigners Act of 1946 was reinstated and made applicable to Assam as in the rest of the country.
The Assamese’s fear of losing their language and culture, and identity, has led to the development of resentment towards Bengalis and this has led to riots between the two communities, in the Brahmaputra valley in the years 1948, 1950, 1960, 1968, 1972 and 1980 (Guha, 1980).
These riots were in retaliation of Bengali speaking people to Assamese becoming the official language of Assam. The fear prior history of suppression of their language for almost 36 years, from 1837 to 1873 (Guha,1980).
Now what happens when you deliberately ignore the rights of the majority to appease to the goons? Obviously, Assam saw the birth of militant groups like, NDFB (National Democratic Front of Bodoland), ULFBA (United Liberation Front of Barak Valley),
MULTA (M United Liberation Tigers of Assam), UPDS (United People’s Democratic Solidarity), DHD (Dima Halim Daogah), ACF (Adivasi Cobra Force), KLO (Kamatapur Liberation Organization), HPC-D (Hmr People’s Convention-Democracy), UPDS (United People’s Democratic Solidarity),
Black Widow, All Adivasi National Liberation Army, KLNLF (Karbi Longri North Cachar Hills Liberation Front) and other inactive terrorist/insurgent groups. This led to a serious deterioration of law & order in state with violence, killings and other anti-social activities.
Even The Governor of Assam, Lt Gen (retired) S.K. Sinha in his report to the President of India in 1998 gave credence to the 1931 Indian Census Report and recognized it as a very important document for three reasons:
1. It contains precious figures of migration from Bengal (now Bangladesh) to Assam even though it was inter-district migration. Unfortunately, now there are no census reports that can accurately define the contours of trans-border movement.
2. After fifty years of independence, the government has chosen to remain virtually oblivious to the danger of national security arising from the migration.
3. The Census Superintendent of Assam in 1931 predicted that, with the exception of Sibsagar district, the Assamese people will not find themselves as the majority community in Assam (Sinha, 1998, p.11).
Indian Leadership, far from realising the seriousness of the threat never ever perceived the threat to begin with. Or they were too much in race for power that they side lined the threat.
“It would be wrong to think that Kashmir is the only dispute that divides India and Pak, though undoubtedly the most significant... that of Assam and some districts of India adjacent to East Pak. To this East Pak have very good claims, .....” (Zulfikar Bhutto, 1969, P. 125).
“Because Eastern Pak must have sufficient land for its expansion and because Assam has abundant forest and mineral resources, coal, petroleum etc., Eastern Pak must include Assam to be financially and economically strong”- Mujibur Rahman
For decades, charges have flown around that local Congress Party, esp in the 1960-70s, patronized the influx of Ms from Bangladesh, to retain pol power in Brahmaputra Valley. The strategy was 2 allow the “miyahs” 2 enter & settle in areas where older Setlmnts migrants existed
To move in and claim legitimacy was easy. One could always claim that one had moved from another part of the state and cite a fictitious parental address or name of a relative. The game of ‘settlement for vote’ continues to be played in the state.”(Hazarika, 2000, pp. 56-57).
The Congress party realizing that they are losing the ethnic Assamese vote was in pursuit of an alternative strategy or support for their party and hence started the vote bank politics and encouraged migration to Assam from Bangladesh/East Pak for political gain (Jaitley, 2012).
The BJP govt recognizes the issue of migration from Bangladesh to north-eastern India as a major national priority issue. They included it in the inaugural gov-policy speech read out on its behalf by the President of India, Mukherjee, to the joint-prlmnt session on 9,4, 2014.
President Mukherjee stated in paragraph 20 of the speech: “The issue of infiltration and illegal immigrants in the Northeast region will be tackled on priority and all pending fencing work along the Northeast border will be completed.” But it has yet to be seen.
Nnthlss, when issue of NRC was raised the the opposition raised hell & now it seems not only those Hs who were forced to run from their homes to save their lives from Bangladesh haven’t gotten their due, but those who persecuted are getting extra rights in this ‘ secular’ country
A new political party heavily patronized and dominated by migrants named, AIUDF headed by a Dubai-based perfume baron of Assamese origin, Badaruddin Ajmal, relegated the regional party, AGP to third place in terms of its strength in the State Legislative Assembly
During election AIUDF concentrated heavily in the migrant strong-holds in Assam and fielded their candidates in those areas, namely the districts of Dhubri, Goalpara, Barpeta, Nagaon, and Bongaigaon in the Brahmaputra Valley and the districts of Halikandi, Karimganj & Cachar.
These are the districts where the migrant population was around or above 50 percent, and their strategy worked. The AIUDF had emerged as the largest opposition party with its vote share of 12.8 percent in 2011 as against 9 percent in 2006 state election
The migrants are often keen and active participants in the politics of the state, and have already garnered a big say in the political arena especially in the western parts of the state, like in the districts of Dhubri, Goalpara, Barpeta, Marigaon and Nagaon.
Their political participation has given them clout and recognition with several political parties, whose success at the polls relies heavily on their support. In view of this, they are often referred to as ‘vote bank’ in Indian political context
Therefore, migrants enjoy enormous political patronage and clout; as a consequence, they receive various favors, like jobs, business opportunities, permanent-residency permits, children’s education, and most importantly, protection and security from government (Jai Bihar, 2009).
In the 2011 elections, 29 M members were elected to the Assembly of 128, some 23% of the total elected members in the assembly, and 18 of these 29 M members belonged to the AIUDF. The AIUDF, with 18 legislators, can boast of more Ms members in the Assembly than even the Congress
According to Ahmed (2009), in 26 out of 126 legislature constituencies in Assam, migrants comprised 50 to 90 % of total voters. In another 7, 40 to 50 % of voters were migrants, whereas in 30 other constituencies they appeared to enjoy the stature of deciding voters.
The issue is so dire that Assam has become the second state after Jammu and Kashmir to have most concentration of Ms, just above WB and Kerala. And after dissolution of J&K, the first. Now it has a share of 31% Ms, highest in any Indian State.
So when The CM @himantabiswa says Assam is the new Kashmir in making, he is not wrong. And if we don’t anticipate it, we are waiting to another mass exodus like 1991-92 to happen.
The issue of migrant influx from Bangladesh remains a central political issue in Assam as the indigenous population fear that they might lose their language, culture, and ultimately, their identity.
Increasingly, migrants from Bangladesh are gaining more political clout and Assam’s main opposition party in the state legislature at present is AIUDF, a migrant-based party.
If the migration continues Assam may become another M majority state in the Indian Union, and if that happens the political scenario of the state will be more complex with regard to citizenship issues, elections and governance.
Such the dire state of Hs, who chose India as their motherland- they hv only been alive 4 bng cannon fodders. Bng displaced 4m E Pak to India, to e Pak again, again to India then again to Bangladesh, just to be massacred,
while the people who are responsible for their massacres are the ones the Indian state is bent over backwards to appease
I remember that when Burhanwani was killed, every Left libbo started a riot on how he was persecuted by the very armed force who was protecting his family but for everyone the frustration of Bijay is and his ancestors for a 120 years is a matter of terrorism.

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