The United Garo Autonomous Council Movement Committee (UGACMC) has strongly opposed the move of the Assam government to further categorization of the scheduled tribes (ST) of Assam into ST (Others).
According to a statement issued by UGACMC chairman Alex K Sangma on Saturday, the ST (O) has been highlighted for eight communities which include Garo, Hajong, Moran, Matok, Tai-Ahom, Chutia, Koch-Rajbongshi and Tea tribes.
He however said the Garo community of Assam strongly opposes and condemns the move of the Assam government since Garos are one of the indigenous tribes of Assam who have already been scheduled as ST (plains) in Assam since 2003.
“The Garo and Hajong community of Assam had already been included in list of Scheduled Tribe by Constitutional Amendment in January 2003,” Sangma said while reacting to a news channel report on the matter.
He further alleged that the Assam government had sent the proposal for 8 communities to the Government of India in 2014 without any justification of the provision of Article 342 (1) (2) of the Constitution of India.
The Committee has also demanded the Assam government to issue clarification on the issue.
“Hence, for the holistic development of this region, it is imperative on the part of the Government of India to take cognizance of the matter and safeguard this right of the Garo to keep the morale of the Garo people on a higher note and do justice to the Garos of Assam,” Sangma stated.