The All Assam Students’ Union (AASU) has demonstrated across Assam against the presence of jihadi forces and alleged Bangladeshi infiltrators.
With huge rallies in several parts of the northeastern Indian state, AASU has yet again questioned the policies of the state and central governments on the issue.The matter of Bangladeshi infiltration has flared up in the state after the activities of the Jamaatul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) in Assam came to light.While the government is being criticised for its failure to detect and prevent militant activities, a strong demand is being made for the complete sealing of the India-Bangladesh border. Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi on Sunday tweeted that his government had succeeded in containing all forms of terrorism following a slew of security measures. “We will also deal very firmly with jihadi groups and foil their sinister designs to set up base in Assam. The security measures have been put in place to ensure that the wheels of development move on,” he said. At a huge students’ rally on the Latasil ground near the Guwahati High Court, AASU adviser Samujjal Bhattachajya said on Saturday: “Had each and every clause of the Assam Accord been implemented by the state and central governments, the Burdwan blast that rocked (West) Bengal on Oct 2 would not have happened.” The Assam Accord, signed by the central government, Assam government, AASU, and the All Assam Gana Sangram Parishad (AAGSP) had fixed Mar 25, 1972 as the cut-off date for detecting and deporting Bangladeshi infiltrators from the state. The porous India-Bangladesh border in Assam has let illegal migrants and fundamentalist forces from Bangladesh cross over, AASU claims. Bhattacharya said if India had to be saved, Assam had to be protected first. He alleged that the Union and state governments woke up to the jihadi threat in Assam and Bengal only after the Burdwan blast. AASU began fresh agitation after the arrest of six JMB militants in Assam’s Barpeta district. The protesters alleged that the soft-pedalling of the issue by the Tarun Gogoi government had encouraged infiltration and the growth of jihadi groups in Assam. However, AASU has strongly appealed to the people not to communalise the agitation against jihadis and illegal migrants. Recently, the Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind organised an anti-terrorism convention where it appealed to the investigating agencies and ordinary people not to brand madarsas as “terror hubs”. AASU, for its part, has threatened to continue its agitation until the government uprooted fundamentalist forces like the JMB and al-Qaeda. Local Muslims, too, have joined the AASU agitation. Meanwhile, Sujina Begum, wife of Shahanur Alam, the Burdwan blast accused and most wanted suspected JMB member, has been sent to 14 days’ judicial custody after a spell of long interrogation. Sujina, who is accused of working for the JMB women’s wing in Assam and West Bengal, was arrested in Guwahati on Nov 6 by a special unit of Assam police. Meanwhile, security forces were conducting widespread search operations to locate Alam. AGENCY