One day after the All Assam Students’ Union (AASU) and Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) reacted strongly to a statement made by senior BJP leader Subramaniam Swamy that the Assam Accord of 1985 had become outdated, state BJP president Siddhartha Bhattacharyya has clearly distanced himself and the unit from Swamy’s stand.
“The Assam Accord is very much a valid document signed between the AASU leaders and the government of India, and cannot be debunked,” Bhattacharyya said. Swamy had on Saturday here said the Assam Accord had become “outdated” and required major amendments. This had angered the AASU and AGP whose past leaders were signatories to it.
Disagreeing with Swamy’s remarks, Bhattacharyya said the AASU was in agreement with the BJP on the status and validity of the Assam Accord. “Yes, there has to be a fresh working formula for its implementation. The Accord is a valid agreement,” he said.
Bhattacharyya, in fact, said the BJP would march forward in Assam taking the Assam Accord as a basis for solving the vexed Bangladeshi infiltration problem facing the state. He also said that Swamy had made the remarks during his visit to Guwahati not at the invitation of the party unit by a non-governmental organisation.
The Assam Accord was signed on August 14, 1985 between the Centre, state government and the then AASU leaders Prafulla Kumar Mahanta and Bhrigu Kumar Phukan. While most of the clauses of the Accord relating to socio-economic issues have been by and large fulfilled, the clauses relating to detection and deportation of Bangladeshi nationals illegally entering Assam has remained almost entirely unimplemented. Both – the Centre and the state government has been blaming each other for this.