Assam CM Initiates Comprehensive Assessment for Indigenous Muslim Communities

News Reporter News Reporter
Wednesday, October 04, 2023
Assam CM Initiates Comprehensive Assessment for Indigenous Muslim Communities
Assam's Inclusive Agenda: Surveying Indigenous Muslim Communities for Development
Guwahati , Assam- October 04 2023: Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma has taken a significant step towards promoting inclusivity and development by directing officials to conduct a comprehensive socio-economic assessment of the state's five indigenous Muslim communities. This initiative aims to provide valuable insights guiding the government in implementing measures that will lead to holistic socio-political and educational development for these communities.

The five indigenous Muslim communities currently under examination are Goria, Moria, Deshi, Syed, and Jolha. Chief Minister Sarma's directive came during a crucial meeting held at Janata Bhawan, where he emphasized the importance of gaining a profound understanding of the unique socio-economic challenges and opportunities faced by these communities.

A statement released by the Chief Minister's Office (CMO) elaborated on the purpose of this endeavor, stating, "These findings will guide the government in taking suitable measures aimed at the comprehensive socio-political and educational upliftment of the state’s indigenous minorities."

This move underlines Assam's unwavering commitment to fostering inclusivity and equitable development for all its communities. However, it is essential to note that this development unfolds against the backdrop of recent controversial statements made by Chief Minister Sarma concerning the 'Miya' people residing in 'char' (riverine sandbar) areas. The term 'Miya' is colloquially used to refer to Bengali-speaking Muslims.

In a prior statement, Chief Minister Sarma expressed the BJP's stance, indicating that they would not seek the votes of 'Miya' people until they embraced reforms, particularly in areas such as child marriage. He clarified that such reforms might take approximately a decade to materialize.

Concurrently, Assam has been actively cracking down on child marriages. Chief Minister Sarma announced that over 800 individuals were apprehended in the second phase of a comprehensive state-wide operation targeting child marriages. He also noted that the number of arrests related to this issue is expected to rise as the operation continues.

As of September 11, Chief Minister Sarma informed the Assam Assembly that a total of 3,907 individuals had been arrested in child marriage cases over the past five years. Among these, 3,319 individuals are facing charges under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012 (POCSO).

This multifaceted approach, including the socio-economic assessment and efforts to eradicate child marriages, highlights Assam's dedication to addressing societal challenges and ensuring the well-being of all its citizens, irrespective of their background or community affiliation. Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma's initiatives reflect the state's ongoing commitment to fostering an inclusive and equitable society.