An intensive phase of agitation for statehood demand looms large over parts of Assam and adjoining areas in West Bengal, vital for surface communication links between the North East and the rest of the country, from the first day of the new year.
The Koch-Rajbongshi community 'living in parts of Assam and West Bengal' has announced an 'intense and indefinite phase of agitation' from January 1, 2010 to press for their demand for a separate 'Kamatapur' state carving out of Assam and West Bengal areas.
The president of All Koch Rajbongshi Students Union and leader of the statehood movement, Bishwajit Rai, informed that the protestors would launch indefinite railway and national highway blockade in protest against the failure of the Central government to address their long-standing demand for a separate state.
Such a rail-rod blockade will cut off the North East from the rest of the country through surface links.
"A massive protest rally of Koch-Rajbongshi held at Bongaigaon in Assam on Tuesday decided to intensify the agitation in view of the Centre's indifferent attitude to our demand for statehood," Rai said.
The Koch-Rajbongshi community demands a separate Kamatapur state comprising a huge area in Brahmaputra Valley in Assam and six adjoining districts of West Bengal. The AKRASU leader claims that there are 40 lakh Koch-Rajbongshi people living in Assam, while another 35 lakhs are in West Bengal.
He said besides the blockade, district level committees of AKRASU would organise various agitation programmes within their respective jurisdictions.