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Assam CM appeals to ULFA (I) not to call for customary bandh on R-Day

However, Sarma said that the solution of the ULFA insurgency problem will be a long drawn one.

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Duliajan: Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Tuesday appealed to the banned insurgent group United Liberation Front of Asom (Independent) not to call for customary bandh on the Republic Day, January 26.

Talking to media persons here, Sarma said in the last few months there have been a lot of positive developments related to the peace talks with ULFA (I).

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“I appeal to ULFA (I) not to call for a customary bandh on January 26. On August 15 also they have not called for bandh” Sarma said, adding that the government has also responded positively to peace overtures by the ULFA (I) chief Paresh Barua by not launching any major offensive against the outfit in recent times.

However, Sarma said that the solution of the ULFA insurgency problem will be a long drawn one.

“The ULFA movement which was started in 1983, is a long movement, therefore finding the solution will also be a complicated one. We have to progress bit by bit and move on very slowly, unwinding differences,” Sarma said.

He added that informally he is in touch with ULFA (I)leadership and a positive mindset is evolving for negotiations on various vexed issues.

Notably, Sarma said that he has not spoken to the over ground pro talk group which is in direct talks with the center.

“I urge the center to first finish the talks with the pro talk group of ULFA. Discussions with both the factions cannot go simultaneously,” Sarma said.

Earlier, Sarma had said that while the ULFA-I remained the “last hurdle” in achieving peace in Assam, efforts with the outfit in the last eight months marked the “beginning of the end”.

“The era of tribal insurgency is over. All militant groups have come forward… our last hurdle is the ULFA-I,” Sarma had said while addressing a press conference on the occasion of the New Year.

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