Jharkhand reacts to Assam violence, 24-hour statewide bandh tomorrow

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Ranchi, Nov 25 (UNI) Jharkhand today reacted to the killing of tribals following group clashes in Assam yesterday with different organisations calling for a statewide bandh tomorrow and Jharkhand Chief Minister Madhu Koda writing to the Union Home Ministry seeking its intervention to protect the adivasis in Assam.

Protestors today gathered at different locations, mainly at Albert Ekka Chowk here, to condemn the act and burnt effigies of Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi.

Mr Koda took stock of the situation and wrote a letter to Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil seeking the Centre's intervention to protect the adivasis in Assam.

Former Chief Minister and Leader of the Opposition Arjun Munda cancelled his scheduled trip to New Delhi and rushed to Guwahati this morning to make an on-the-spot assesment of the situation.

Jharkhand Mukti Morcha president and former Coal Minister Sibu Soren condemned the act and held both the Centre and the Assam government responsible for the massacre.

Mr Soren said he had been supporting the adivasis' agitation in Assam as their demand for ST status was a ''genuine'' one.

Mr Soren was also scheduled to leave for Assam by today, sources close to him said.

Menawhile, the All Jharkhand Students' Union (AJSU) and Jharkhand People Party (JPP) called for a 24-hour statewide bandh tomorrow.

AJSU president Bimal Kachchap and JPP general secretary Surya Singh Besra (former MLA) told UNI over phone that the adivais had been living in Assam for about 200 years and their demand for ST status was just.

They alleged that the law and order siuation in Assam was fast deteriorating and demanded that President's Rule be imposed.

The Tribal Students' Union of Jharkhnd alleged that yesterday's violence was a planned attack to kill adivasis in Assam, adding that the Gogoi administration was responsible for the incident.

They demanded Rs five lakh each as compensation and jobs to the next of kin of the deceased, besides seeking dismissal of the Congress government in Assam.

UNI

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