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The allocation of land to Yoga Guru Baba Ramdev in the Bodo Territorial Council (BTC) area has irked the  ULFA  (I) (led by Paresh Baruah). The outfit said allocation of land by the BTC to yoga practitioner Ramdev is an anti-Assam move. Ramdev is known to be a close associate of the BJP.

In a statement released to the media, the outfit said it had come to know that the process of allocating land to Ramdev was almost through and the process of handing over 3,800 bighas of land to the Yoga Guru is moving ahead.

A statement signed by the ULFA (I) President Abhijit Asom said, “The move of Hagrama Mohilary, one of the leaders of the Bodos, to hand over the land to Ramdev was sad and anti-Assam in nature.” The move also faced criticism from the All-Assam Tribal Sangha, an organisation, which has been agitating and defending the rights of the indigenous communities.

The Sangha said 916 bighas of land have been allotted to the yoga practitioner in Bijni revenue circle and 2,912 bighas of land have been allotted in Sidli revenue circle in Chirang district. It said the allotment has been made at a   time when indigenous people in the Bodoland Territorial Areas District have failed to get land rights documents under the Forest Rights Act.

Ulfa (I) requested leaders of the Bodo community to stay away from such moves and refrain from transferring land to anyone other than people from the indigenous communities. The outfit’s statement said the move would help Ramdev amass money through his Patanjali products rather than doing any good for the indigenous people of the state. Ulfa (I) said the move would also help increase the influence of the RSS and other Hindu elements in the
state.

All-Assam Tribal Sangha leader Aditya Khakhlary had said under Chapter 10 of the Assam Land and Revenue Regulation 1886, the BTC administration cannot allot land in this manner. The Sangha had threatened to start an agitation against the move. Land is a very sensitive issue in the BTAD area where hundreds of acres of under the tribal belts and blocks have been allegedly encroached upon. Several riots that have taken place in the region
since the nineties.

According to a source, the BTC’s decision to hand over land to Ramdev could be attributed to the Bodoland People’s Front’s new found bonhomie with the BJP. The two parties had contested the Assembly elections as allies. Ramdev has reportedly been invited to the swearing in ceremony of the new BJP-led Assam Ministry today

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