Rail blockade hits train services in Assam

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HT Correspondent

KOKRAJHAR, Oct 10: Train services in Assam were severely affected for more than 10 hours on Tuesday in the 12-hour railway blockade by three Bodo organisations demanding separate Bodoland state. All Bodo Students’ Union (ABSU), Peoples Joint Action Committee for Bodoland Movement (PJACBM) and National Democratic Front of Boroland (NDFB) squatted on railway tracks at several places in lower Assam disrupting rail traffic during the day.

However, there was no report of any untoward incident from anywhere during the blockade. The train services were restored after 4 pm after the protestors reduced the blockade to 10:30 hours considering the plight of the rail passengers in various railway stations.

Thousands of picketers have blocked railway tracks at Kokrajhar under Alipurduar division and at Dhekiajuli road station under Rangiya division. Due to the blockade, 12519 Lokmanya Tilak – Kamakhya AC Express was controlled at Chautara from 5:05 am, 12345 Howrah – Guwahati Saraighat Express at New Alipurduar from 6:12 am, 12502 New Delhi – Guwahati Poorvattar Sampark Kranti Express at New Coochbehar from 8:10 am and 15667 Gandhidham – Kamakhya Express was controlled at New Coochbehar from 5:55 am.

The 15769 Alipurduar Jn – Lumding Intercity Express was short terminated at Fakiragram and returned to Alipurduar Jn, 15771 Alipurduar Jn – Kamakhya Intercity Express was also short terminated at New Coochbehar and returned to Alipurduar Jn.

The 13247 Kamakhya – Rajendranagar Capital Express was controlled at Goalpara Town from 7:52 am, 25658 Silchar – Sealdah Kanchanjungha Express at New Bongaigaon from 6:45 am, 15903 Dibrugarh – Chandigarh Express at New Bongaigaon from 7 am, 15909 Avadh Assam Express at Bijni from 7 am, 12435 Dibrugarh – New Delhi Rajdhani Express at Rangiya from 6:43 pm, 15601 Poorvattar Sampark Kranti Express at Boko from 7:45 pm, 15960 Dibrugarh – Howrah Kamrup Express at Guwahati from 7:47 am, 12510 Guwahati – Bangalore Express at Rangiya from 8:18 am, 12423 Dibrugarh – New Delhi Rajdhani Express at Gauhati from 6:35 am, 15959 Howrah – Dibrugarh Kamrup Express at New Jalpaiguri from 6:17 am.

Leaders of three Bodo organisations have decided to continue their agitation till the achievement of Bodoland and said they would announce more agitational programme from November. In Kokrajhar railway station, nearly lakh of peoples gathered with banner, placards at their hands and shouting slogans seeking early solution to the Bodoland issue through political dialogue.

“BJP-led government has failed to keep their words made before the Lok Sabha elections. They promised us to bring a solution to the issue,” ABSU general secretary Lawrence Islary said.

He also announced a series of agitational programmes which include a grand rally and dharna in New Delhi on November 6 and 7, 24-hour rail blockade during the winter session of Parliament, indefinite economic blockade and hunger strike.

Former Rajya Sabha MP and UPPL president UG Brahma, leaders apart of ABSU, NDFB-P, NDFB-R, PJACBM, UPPL, Boro Somaj, Dularai Boro Harimu Afad, Garo Development Council, Scheduled Caste Development Committee, social activists participated in the blockade.

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