Assam: AASU-AJYCP's proposed party to be named 'Asom Jatiyo Parishad'

Last Updated : 14 September 2020, 13:51 IST

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The All Assam Students' Union (AASU) and Asom Jatiyatabadi Yuba Chatra (AJYCP), two influential students' organisations in Assam, which led the anti-Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) agitation, on Monday announced a new regional party with a target to defeat the ruling BJP and its ally Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) in the Assembly elections slated early next year.

In 1985, the AASU leaders had similarly given birth to AGP after leading the six-year-long "anti-foreigners movement" with an aim to solve the foreigners' issue. AASU, however, lost faith in AGP after the latter joined hands with BJP in 2016 despite the saffron party's denial to scrap CAA. AGP has already announced to go ahead with BJP and contest the next year's elections together too.

The new party, named as Asom Jatiya Parishad (AJP) also came as a dampener to the opposition Congress' plan to stitch a "grand alliance" with all anti-CAA parties as it decided to fight against Congress and Badruddin Ajmal-led AIUDF. The party chose the tagline: 'Assam firest, always and ever'.

"Our fight is against the communal forces and the parties which exploited the Assamese voters and turned out to be traitors. BJP imposed the CAA despite strong protests by the indigenous people in Assam while AGP, which was formed to solve the foreigners issue proved itself to be a traitor by joining hands with BJP. At the same time, Congress exploited us for votes but did not solve the foreigner issue," AASU general secretary, Lurinjyoti Gogoi, who has been at the forefront of the anti-CAA agitation told reporters.

"The border with Bangladesh still remained open, NRC has not been fully implemented while the process to provide constitutional safeguards to the indigenous Assamese too has remained in the backburner. Instead, the CAA has been passed which seeks to destroy Assamese culture and identity by giving citizenship to Hindu migrants till December 2014. Our stand is clear: we will not accept a single post-1971 migrant, be it Hindu or Muslim," he later said.

The new regional party was announced as per the suggestions of a committee set up by the two students' bodies to work out the next course of action for fighting against the CAA.

Gogoi, however, said the new party was open to explore the possibility of joining hands with other regional parties sharing the same principles including the one being planned by another anti-CAA activist, Akhil Gogoi. Akhil had earlier appealed all regional parties to unite and contest the election under one banner to "stop BJP and RSS's run" in Assam.

AASU, AJYCP, and Akhil Gogoi's Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti have been leading the anti-CAA agitation that turned violent in December, following which Akhil was arrested under sedition charge. Akhil is still in judicial custody.

Reacting to the formation of the new party, Assam minister and BJP's strategist in the Northeast, Himanta Biswa Sarma said it would have no impact on the party's target to retain power. Sarma had earlier claimed that BJP and its allies would bag 100 of the 126 seats in the next elections. "Such parties come into being before every election. They will get 700 to 1500 votes in each Constituency," he said.

Congress appealed to the new party to join the "grand alliance" in order to unseat BJP and AGP.

Published 14 September 2020, 10:41 IST

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