Guwahati: The Indigenous peoples of Mung-Dun-Chun-Kham, Assam, North East India (IPMDCKANEI) came together on Assam Divas (Sukafa Divas) to address critical issues impacting their communities. Held at the Conference Hall, Media Trust', Rup Nagar, Guwahati, the day-long program included a significant round table conference featuring ethnic activists from Assam, Tripura, Manipur, and Nagaland.
The event commenced with tributes to historical figures, Chao Pha Chao lung Sukafa and Bodofa Upendra Nath Brahma, followed by intense discussions on the challenges confronting indigenous groups in North East India. Representatives from various organizations including the United Bodo Peoples Federation, All Assam Koch Rajbanshi Sanmilani, Sonowal Kochari Samaj, and others voiced concerns in alignment with the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples 2007 (UNDRIP-2007).
A unanimous sentiment resonated among the delegates: addressing the region's issues can find a path through the principles outlined in UNDRIP-2007. The conference also expressed dismay at the absence of a clear constitutional recognition of indigenous peoples in India, urging the government to rectify this.
Under the guidance of Dr. Rana Kumar Changmai, Vice-chairman, the conference culminated in several resolutions:
- Creation of a unified platform, backed by an ad-hoc committee, to tackle indigenous issues on a national and international scale.
- Urgent appeals to the Central Government for a peace initiative in Manipur and a plea to all Manipuri communities for peaceful coexistence.
- Call for donations of essentials, such as warm clothing and medical supplies, for those in relief camps in Manipur. Anup Arandhara, Secretary General of IPMDCKANEI, is coordinating these efforts.
- Strong advocacy for the formal recognition of the use of Roman script for the Kok Borok Language in Tripura.
The conference concluded on a positive note with a heartening display of unity, as representatives from the Kuki and Meitei communities embraced in a spirit of brotherhood and peace, emphasizing the collective endeavor toward progress and harmony.