All India Mahila Congress President Sushmita Dev today lashed out at Assam Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma over the “imposition of Assamese language” on the Bengali speaking populace of the state’s Barak Valley.
While speaking with mediapersons, Sushmita Dev said, “There are Bodos, Dimasas, Moshing, Bengalis. So the definition of Assamese should include Bengalis as well. But what does HBS say? Okay, you people are 'khilonjiya' but if you want to work in Assam, you have to learn Assamese. Why? Barak valley's official language is Bangla. How can they learn Assamese now?”
While responding to the queries on the Assam Accord she claimed that it never mentioned about learning one language. “In Clause 6 of the Assam Accord, there is no definition of the word 'Assamese'. I am crystal clear on this. Assamese cannot be defined on the basis of language. There are so many languages. Every language should be included in the definition of Assamese,” she argued.
Sushmita went on, “Who is Himanta Biswa Sarma? Is he above Clause 6? The Assam Accord was made by Rajiv ji. And it did not say that we have to stop speaking Bengali. We will never leave our mother tongue, Bengali. We respect the language and culture of Assam but we will not leave Bengali language.”
She also raised questions on the current Assam Accord Committee. “Why is there not a single Bengali in the Committee? They should've been there,” she said, adding that the Committee should have representatives from each community residing in Assam.
It may be mentioned here that Sushmita Dev was on her visit to Central Jail to show solidarity with two leaders of the Youth Congress, Zubair and Kamrul. She said that the party would fight their case in the court as they had been slapped with false charges.
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