Golaghat Convention

Golaghat in Assam

The Golaghat Convention was a historic national convention of the people of Assam, organised in Golaghat for 2 days from 13–14 October 1985.[1]

The 2 days' convention led to the formation of Assam's first major political party under the name and style of Asom Gana Parishad (AGP), and formally launched in Golaghat on 14 October 1985.[2]

After intense negotiations with the then New Delhi government, headed by the prime minister Rajiv Gandhi, the All Assam Students Union (AASU) agreed to sign–off the Assam Accord with the government on 15 August 1985.[3]

HistoryEdit

The Indian National Congress mostly dominated the electoral history of Assam from the first election of 1952. For many years, the citizens of Assam were raising the demand for steps against the illegal foreign immigrants who had entered the state of Assam through the porous border, mostly from Bangladesh (erstwhile East Pakistan) and occupied areas of the state, thus threatening the economic, political, social and cultural existence of the indigenous people of the state.

The All Assam Students Union (AASU), under the leadership of Prafulla Kumar Mahanta (President) and late Bhrigu Kumar Phukan (General Secretary), and the All Assam Gana Sangram Parishad (AAGSP), reached out to the union Government of India demanding removal of several million illegal infiltrators from across the borders.[4] This rapidly turned into a social movement throughout the state, and the Assam Movement was born in 1979.

Continued for six long years until 15 August 1985 when it culminated with signing of Assam Accord, led to a realization of constitutional, legislative and administrative safeguards.[5] for Assam among the participants and Assamese citizens, resulting the Golaghat Convention.[6][7]

The convention held for 2 days, highlighted the regional aspirations that emerged out of the Assam Movement and formally recorded as part of the Assam Accord and emphasized the need to consolidate political power in Assam's politics by instituting a major regional political party. Thus, AASU transformed itself into Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) on 14 October 1985 in Golaghat.[8] AASU's President Prafulla Kumar Mahanta was elected as the President of the AGP.[9] Smaller parties and organisations such as Asom Jatiyabadi Dal, Purbanchaliya Loka Parishad and Asam Sahitya Sabha regrouped with the AGP. The AGP swept the 1985 Assembly elections, thereby forming the government in Assam that year.

PrinciplesEdit

The base for the electoral realignment, leading to the formation of AGP in this convention, was set–up via the principles of Assam Movement of 1979–85. Thus, the core principles of the convention were, but not not limited the following:[10][11][12]

  1. Regain Assam's political control via detection of the foreigners who have infiltrated into Assam since independence and to deport them to Bangladesh.
  2. Develop Assam, envisioning, Sonor Assam (English translation: Golden Assam), signifying prosperity.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Indranil Banerjie (17 January 2014). "Birth of AGP leads to Assam being divided into two irreconcilable camps". India Today.
  2. ^ Gobin Medok (15 October 2013). "AGP sells regional dreams – Leadership avoids reference to rift in party, paints rosy picture at Foundation Day function in Dhemaji". The Telegraph.
  3. ^ Samudra Gupta Kashyap (28 April 2017). "Assam Accord 1985: AASU still wants 90 points addressed". The Indian Express.
  4. ^ K. Anurag (15 October 2008). "Assam: Regional parties unite against Congress". Rediff.com.
  5. ^ Times News Network (TNN) (9 September 2014). "AGP strike over Assam Accord". The Times of India.
  6. ^ Chandra Nath Boruah (2009). Assamese Response To Regionalism. Mittal Publications. p. 85. ISBN 9788183242813.
  7. ^ Sushanta Talukdar (6 March 2006). "Shourie wants AGP-BJP tie-up". The Hindu.
  8. ^ Ritupallab Saikia (15 October 2008). "AGP reunified at Golaghat". Assam Times.
  9. ^ "Member of Legislative Assembly (M.L.A.), Assam". Assam Legislative Assembly, Dispur, Guwahati.
  10. ^ Chandra Nath Boruah (2009). Assamese Response To Regionalism. Mittal Publications. p. 17. ISBN 9788183242813.
  11. ^ Dipak Kumar Sarma. "Negotiating Factionalism: The case of the Asom Gana Parishad" (PDF). Dipak Kumar Sarma.
  12. ^ Dipak Kumar Sarma – Research Scholar, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, Indian Institute of Technology, Guwahati, Assam (February 2012). "Different Paradigm on Factional Politics: Reference to Asom Gana Parishad". Centre for Environment, Education and Economic Development (CEEED), Assam.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)