Guwahati, April 21: Seven sub-committees, constituted to chalk out the roadmap for overall development of indigenous minorities in Assam, submitted their recommendations to chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma here today.
The sub-committees on cultural identity, health, education, skill development, population stabilisation, financial inclusion and women empowerment were formed consequent to an interaction between the chief minister and over 150 leading personalities from indigenous minority communities across various fields here last year.
Making a presentation on the recommendations in regard to identity of indigenous Assamese Muslims, chairman of the sub-committee on cultural identity, Wasbir Hussain suggested that the state government, through a notification, might recognise the Assamese Muslims as an indigenous Assamese-speaking community of Assam.
“Five sub-groups of Assamese Muslims – Syed, Goriya, Moriya, Deshi and Julha – should be clearly mentioned and recognised in the government notification,” Hussain said.
He further recommended that a separate directorate/Authority may be set up for Assamese Muslims to provide necessary documentation to the people of the community to reflect their distinct identity.
“The Assam government may undertake a census to identify and document the Assamese Muslim community,” he said.
In regard to political representation, Hussain suggested that a provision similar to Article 333 of the Indian Constitution may be enacted to provide representation of Assamese Muslims in Parliament and Assam Legislative Assembly.
“An Upper House (Legislative Council) may be created in Assam as per Article 169 of the Indian Constitution. Once the Legislative Council is formed, specific number of seats may be reserved for the Assamese Muslim community in this Council,” he suggested.
Among other recommendations, he suggested that prominent Assamese Muslim personalities need to be popularised and the Syed Abdul Malik Literary Award (given only once in 2015) resumed.