Guwahati, Jul 29 : It was a public gathering with a difference. People came out in their thousands to support peace and reject violence and disturbance that the ULFA has been indulging in for more than two decades.
Tinsukia District has been one of the worst hit by chaos and anarchy unleashed by the militant outfit. People now feel that the return of the misguided cadres from the fold of ULFA reflects the frustration with the lack of progress and economic development due to militancy.
"Both the government and ULFA leaders should compromise and take the on going ceasefire further ahead. The leaders should take into consideration the state, people of Assam and come to a compromise. Only then peace will come to the state," said S. Borgohain, a resident. Viveka Lagashu, another resident said, "Ceasefire is a very good decision taken by the section of ULFA leaders for the greater interest of the people. We welcome them. Guns will never solve any problems.
Last month, one of the main divisions of the ULFA broke away from the outfit under intense pressure from the people. They blamed the ULFA leadership for perpetrating untold misery on the people of Assam for an outdated ideology.
They also blamed the militant leadership of leading a comfortable life in a foreign country and taking the Assamese for granted. Ethnicity will be protected and peace will be sustained. So we decided to come out in public and with their support, together we will solve the problems. We will discuss the issues and take their opinion and whatever comes out will be sent to Central leaderships and also to the Central Government of India," said Jiten Dutta, a former ULFA cadre.
Sanjay Kishan, Vice President, ATTSA Central Committee said, "We hope that they give information for different organization about how they are going to bring about peace in Assam. If their intention is right, then everyone will definitely support them and also our organization will also surely support them."
Over the years, pressure has been building on the ULFA cadres to stop violence and join the mainstream. People now know that ULFA are now dependent on anti-Indian forces, an allegation that the cadres who returned home are also leveling. By Vaschipem Kamondang.