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Gogoi hits out at ULFA for demanding sovereignty

Written by: Staff
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Guwahati, Nov 23 (UNI) Asom Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi today lambasted the banned United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) for demanding restoration of sovereignty of the state.

Addressing a select gathering of scholars and distinguished personalities on the occasion of releasing Asian Dialogue Society's report ''Shared Integration'', Mr Gogoi said the ULFA's demand for sovereignty would not help the state.

'' Sovereignty cannot help Asom as it could not grow and prosper in isolation. Assam can prosper only through integrity with the rest of India as well as its Asian neighbours,'' Mr Gogoi asserted.

'' Conflicts and differences are bound to be encountered on the path of development. It is only through dialogue that conflicts can be resolved to facilitate sustainable economic development. We can grow through dialogue, not conflicts,'' the Chief Minister averred.

He cited the example of Mizoram, which was able to convert itself to an island of peace in troubled region from being a worse insurgency-affected state through 1960s to early 1980s.

Former insurgents were now well settled in Mizoram after signing the Peace Accord with the Centre as a result of political negotiation, he said adding same thing was now being replicated in Nagaland.

Former Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Thailand M R Sukhumbhand Paribatra said soft power and diplomacy were the way for future for today's world of hunger, poverty, drug menace, conflicts and wars, weapons of mass destruction and other extreme anomalies.

''For me, building a better Asia means perfect democracy, better education facilities, better quality of life for people and regional harmony that leads to usher in sustainable economic development,'' he said.

UNI XC SJC PK DS1620

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