GUWAHATI: Every person is entitled to human rights without discrimination. The rights to equality and non-discrimination are cornerstones of human rights law. This was more or less of what the speakers at an open meeting said as they joined the International Day to End Racial Discrimination in Guwahati on Wednesday. They said racism, xenophobia and intolerance are still prevalent in all societies, and discriminatory practices are widespread, particularly targeting migrants and refugees as well as people of African descent. The speakers, mostly, urged the states to take comprehensive measures to combat racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance, and to promote tolerance, inclusion, unity and respect for diversity. Char and Rural Development Society (CARDS) in collaboration with Control Arms Foundation of India (CFAI), Manipur Woman Gun Survivors Network (MWGSN) and Multiple Action Research Group (MARG) Wednesday convened to commemorate March 21 as International Day to End Racial Discrimination in the city with a panel discussion themed: “Diversity in India: Race, Ethnicity and Culture.” “Many people, oragnisations came in and we all formed what is known as Northeast India Forum Against Racism (NEIFAR). Our efforts made the Government of India form Bezbaruah Committee, the first ever committee formed in independent India on addressing racial discrimination and work towards a series of recommendations to mitigate the same,” said Binalakshmi Nepram whose speech was read out in her absence. Journalist and social activist. Krishna Nath said, “Racism unlike what politicians believe is not always a matter of color, it is any kind of discrimination based on false association of superficial, physical difference- skin color, shape of one’s lips, hair, stature and others along with word and intellectual qualities.” Citing the position of Islam on racism, Syed Miraz Ahmed quoted Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) saying, “An Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab; also a white has no superiority over a black nor does a black have any superiority over a white except by piety and good action.” Speakers who participated in the panel discussion included Manashi Das Queah, Archana Sethiya, Alakananda Das, Dr Richa Panday, Dr Dipti Rekha Sharma and Tinat Atifa Masood. Closing in the event, Shaheen Hussain Nongbri, President Char and Rural Development Society pledged to do all to address discrimination owing from the constructs of race, ethnicity and culture and make a congenial environment for all to co-exist. A series of posters were also launched as a campaign on the issue. The event was supported by the European Union.
AsomSahitya Sabha’s former president Kanaksen Deka inaugurated a book titled Buddhism In Assam on Monday at Guwahati Press Club. Penned by the US based engineer Dr Rajen Barua, the book is an outcome of serious research works for decades, where the history of Buddhism in the region from 600 BC to 1600 AD has been described with notable facts.
A periodical for translated literary works named Saneki was also inaugurated by academician Manjumala Das in presence of publishers Abani M. Sarma & Ranjit Gogoi, journalists Nava Thakuria & Ankur RanjanChangmai along with a number of distinguished personalities.
A North EastFestival in New Delhi is pulling no less crowd after it opened in the capital on Friday. Organized by an Assam-based NGO, the on going event at IGNCA is being attended by a number BJP leaders, professors and journalists who projected the north eastern region from different perspectives. BJP leader Ram Madhav who has been looking after the party’s Assam affairs was prominent among those who attended the event on Saturday.
Madhav said, "the emotional disconnect between the people of North East and the rest of the country is our own creation. We as a government are committed to bridge this emotional disconnect. Development is not complete without the development of North East. The Government of India is taking many steps for the development of the region and talking to Bangladesh and other SAARC nations as well to work in this regard. As part of our Look East Policy, we are looking to improving the physical connectivity and infrastructure in the region."
Others who spoke in the event included Nani Gopal Mahanta, Ravi Capoor, AM Singh, Krishalaya Bhattacharya to be thanked by chief organizer Shyamkanu Mahanta. The prominence of a political figure like Ram Madhab other than a Union minister raised the eyebrows of many visitors who thronged the venue on Saturday.
GUWAHATI: Security forces claimed to have captured a top ULFA-I rebel on the soil of Bangladesh triggering yet another controversy where the rebel outfits has vehemently denied arrest of his fellow rebels.
Sources told a section of media that identified as Nasim Ahmed, the top rebel and close aide of Paresh Baruah was arrested in the neighbouring country recently before handing over to India.
But top ULFA-I source has called it a fabricated story designed by the security forces to confuse the rebel outfit.
According to top rebel leaders, there was no ULFA-I rebel known as Nasim Ahmed.
Talking to a section of media, Commander -in- Chief Paresh Baruah over telephone made it plain and simple ULFA-I has no rebel known as Nasim Ahmed.