TDN World Desk: Weeks before election some 600 Muslims families were forcibly evicted from their land in Assam’s Hojai district by the Karbi Anglong Autonomous Council (KAAC).
During the eviction drive the paramilitary forces and police indulged in violence. According to Aljazeera, one pregnant woman namely Kulsuma Begum died after having received physical injury.
Kulsum’s Mother-in-law described what kind of brutal treatment meted out to her family by the paramilitary forces and police who were employed in the eviction operation. “Seven to eight policemen entered the house and started ransacking it. I could take some stuff out. When I came back, I saw Kulsuma was lying on the floor and couldn’t move,” Ramisa Khatun told Al Jazeera.
She alleged that they barged into their house to oust them from their house. They (armed forces) even did not spare Kulsum, her daughter-inlaw who had given birth to a baby just a couple of hours before. Attempted to remove her physically.
22-year-old Kulsum was taken to a local hospital. But she was referred to Guwahati Medical College. On March 11 Kulsum died. Her new-born son in GMCH was left motherless and homeless, all because of the eviction drive carried out by the Assam government. News Click reports that her death was ”the result of denial of medical service and amounts to gross violation of human rights”.
As per report, following a public outrage complaint was lodged against several KAAC officials. “A case has been registered and the investigation is going on,” Hojai Deputy Commissioner (DC) Tanmoy Borgohain told Al Jazeera.
Reason Behind Eviction
Bharatiya Janata Party leader Tuliram Ronghang, who is also chief executive member of the KAAC in Assam, alleged that these people are not Indian, rather they are undocumented immigrants from Bangladesh. They had encroached upon the land, which belonged to Karbi Anglong. However, the evicts claimed that they are not Bangladeshi immigrants. They are genuine Indian citizens.
According to news outlet News Click, Yearly flood and erosion is a reality in Assam. Assam till now has lost 7.4% of its land to erosion. Entire villages have been washed away and the people living there have been displaced. Those displaced in erosion are often forced to take up living in protected government areas. People living in Chars or sandbars in Brahmaputra are more prone to such displacement. These people who mostly belong to the Miya Muslims community are often targeted as illegal immigrants.
Why the eviction operation was carried out before election? This question also becomes essential y relevant. After coming to power BJP engaged in the “othering” process of the muslims. The Muslims are are being projected as infiltrators and foreigners. And these kinds of narratives were being deliberately pushed in the political discourse. Is this eviction process just before weeks of general election is a trope to win over the Assamese voters? Geo-political analysts also raised the same question.