ULFA won''t take part in Assam polls

Written by: Pti
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"Through the talks, therefore, we proposed to evaluate various facets of the Constitution and to explore theviability of protection and enrichment of the sovereignty ofthe people of Assam in all its dimensions -- political,social and cultural, within the flexibility as mentioned bythe prime minister," Choudhury said.

During the press conference, ''vice-chairman'' Gogoi and''finance secretary'' Hazarika were also present but onlyChoudhury took questions from journalists.

Declaring that the agenda of the future talks with thegovernment and ULFA''s demands would be decided by the "peopleof Assam", he said it was necessary to amend the Constitutionto fulfil the hopes and aspirations of the people.

Asked what would be the role of ULFA in the comingAssam Assembly elections due in April-May, Choudhury said thegroup would not participate in the polls.

"Time and again we have been saying that we will havezero involvement in the polls," he said. However, he said,ULFA cannot mention anything what would be the role of itssupporters in the elections.

On the possibility of declaring a ceasefire, Choudhurysaid the initiative has to come from the government. "Anyway,we have not indulged in violence in last one year," he said.

Asked about the opposition of ''commander-in-chief''Paresh Baruah to the dialogue process, he said it was adecision of the group''s highest decision making body generalcouncil. "Baruah is still our commander-in-chief," he said.

He said the ULFA is still a banned group and itsmembers outlawed but they are trying to be a "good citizen" tobring a lasting solution to the "conflict".

On February 5, the ULFA announced that it will sit forunconditional talks with the Centre "respecting the wishes ofthe people of Assam". It also apologised for the violent actsit committed.

The ULFA delegation arrived in the national capitallast evening. Before leaving for Delhi, the leaders met ChiefMinister Tarun Gogoi and sought his cooperation to takeforward the peace process with the Centre.

The ULFA leaders released from jail recently decidedto hold unconditional talks with the government but thefaction led by the group''s ''commander-in-chief'' Barua isopposed to it.

The ULFA delegation is also likely to meet PrimeMinister Manmohan Singh on February 13 after his return fromKerala.

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