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Barua group gives ULFA 3 months to 'return to active duty'

Assam,Terrorism, Mon, 30 Apr 2012 IANS

Guwahati, April 30 (IANS) A breakaway ULFA group led by Paresh Barua and opposed to any talks with the government, has set a three-month deadline for the majority pro-talks faction to "return" to ULFA and join "active duty".


In an email statement to the media Sunday evening, the breakaway group's publicity wing in-charge Arunodoy Asom urged United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) chairman Arabinda Rajkhowa to join "active duty and lead the organisation".


"We, the ULFA as a whole, are very humbly requesting our chairman to return to lead the organisation, breaking free of Indian control within three months of issuance of this call. Otherwise, the vacant chair will be filled up through constitutional process," said Arunudoy Asom in the statement issued to the media.


The anti-talks group, opposed to the ongoing peace effort, also said it expected that those who remained detached from the outfit would "realise the futility of their misplaced confidence and return to active duty but Rajkhowa had so far showed no signs of return and continued to be hosted by India".


The statement also pointed out that the constitution of the outfit had not given anyone, from the chairman down to ordinary members, any power to compromise on the ideals of the organisation.


"After being in prison, he (Rajkhowa) curiously stopped insisting on the sovereignty issue. Instead, he is now talking about safeguarding the identity of Assam along with some minor issues," said the statement.


The dominant pro-talks faction led by Arabinda Rajkhowa had entered into formal peace talks with the government after most of its senior leaders were arrested in Bangladesh in December 2009.


In February last year, the first round of talks were held between an eight-member delegation of the pro-talks faction led by Rajkhowa and in presence of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh as well as Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram in New Delhi.


The pro-talks faction is scheduled to visit New Delhi sometime next month for the third round of talks.


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