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Assam Govt: Assam govt inks deal with militant group ULFA, reaches out for peace negotiations

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After signing peace pact with United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA), the Assam government is trying to engage ULFA (independent) in peace negotiations.

The militant outfit, led by Paresh Baruah, has remained aloof to peace overtures and has stated on several occasions that it will sit for talks if “restoration of Assam’s sovereignty” is made the agenda of discussion.

Baruah, while talking to local news channels on Saturday, said he is not upset or upbeat with the pact. He is not averse to dialogue. “We are open to discussion keeping in mind the history and principles of the state. There is no problem discussing our core issue. Just discussing our core issue will not mean that it is against the Constitution of India. Discussion of the issue should not scare anyone.”

Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Friday said peace accord will stimulate the anti-talk ULFA faction to come for talks. “I have appealed to Paresh on several occasions to come to peace talks. Those maintaining ties with Baruah had stated that there cannot be talks with both the factions together. It was said the anti-talk faction will come to talks only after talks with the pro-talk faction are wrapped up. This accord is a big move to bring Baruah to talks.”

Earlier Sarma had said that balance has to be struck between the core demand of militant ULFA-I and limits of the Constitution.

ULFA (I), also known as the anti-talk faction, had unilaterally extended the ceasefire by three months in the past.

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