ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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On the Student Movement in Barak Valley

Understanding the development of a society and delving into student activism at a particular period requires an understanding of the concept of student power. But student activism is a complex phenomenon, and there is no single theoretical model that describes it fully. Nevertheless, the historical context may provide an appropriate framework for analysing a student movement. Hence, this article will put forward some general perspectives on student activism in Barak Valley in Assam and will try to comprehend the role of the ACKHSA in its initial decade against the historical backdrop of the origin of the movement.

Making of a Frontier Identity

A frontier is a “contested” geopolitical and cultural space. The emergence of the frontier has often been attributed to the complex historical, political, cartographic and cultural rearrangements that took place in a region at different points in time. The paper attempts to examine the making of the erstwhile Goalpara as a frontier and its “transition” to a “contested space” spreading between Assam and West Bengal. Based on an anthology, it tries to locate this frontier, considering its close proximity with both the states and the resultant identity imbroglio, in the context of the Koch-Rajbanshi community living in the region.

Inclusive Education for Children with Special Needs in Dibrugarh, Assam

The synergy between access to healthcare and educational rights of children with special needs falls into a weighty realm of academic concern and practical applicability today. While the legal mediations have articulated provisions for equal accessibility and inclusion in health and education sectors, the inconsistencies faced in the lived reality present grave discrepancies. The educational rights of the CWSN along with their health conditions in Dibrugarh, Assam are explored in this context.

Interrogating the Drive against Child Marriage in Assam

The Assam government’s approach towards tackling child marriage is examined. While the government is utilising the Child Marriage Act, 2006 and the POCSO Act, 2012, these legal measures lack soundness and are insufficient in addressing the root causes of the problem. This gap in the legislation fails to address the unique challenges contributed by the socio-economic and cultural factors.

Caste Inequalities in Contemporary Assam

The prevalence of caste-based inequalities in contemporary Assam is examined in this article. Although scholars in the context of North East India in general have examined caste–tribe relations and racial discrimination, caste-based disparities and discrimination in Assam are yet to be explored in the academic discourse. It is argued that caste hierarchies are firmly embedded in the everyday life of Assamese society. An intersectional approach is necessary to re-examine the relation between caste inequalities and gender, tribe, and class in Assam.

The Historical Trajectory of Modern Assam

The Quest for Modern Assam: A History, 1942–2000 by Arupjyoti Saikia, New Delhi: Penguin, 2023; pp 852, `1,299.

The Politics of Delimitation in Assam

The delimitation exercise in Assam has not only redrawn the boundaries of the constituencies but also political fault lines of the state. Hailed by a section as a step to safeguard the rights of indigenous communities and critiqued by another for ensuring skewed representation, the act may have multipronged impact on the state politics ahead of elections.

Elusive Frontier

The forest management and state-building efforts in the late 19th century are analysed by examining the failure of a state-run rubber plantation in Charduar, Assam. This plantation needs to be understood as a means of establishing state control along an ecologically, topographically and politically volatile frontier. It emphasises the importance of analysing colonialism as a complex and spatially diverse phenomenon rather than a monolithic juggernaut. The failure of the rubber experiment symbolised the failure of colonial authority in the tribal hills.

Citizenship, Nationality, Discord, Accord, and Assam

The appearance of the Assam Accord in the recent citizenship debates in India has a historical significance. Providing a critique of liberal citizenship, Assam’s journey shows how citizenship in a culturally diverse nation state like India evolved distinctively along with different identity questions. Assam, through a popular movement against “illegal” migrants, under the leadership of the educated (middle) class, asserted this identity question and tangled the Assamese nationality in the legal framework of Indian citizenship. The accord, which ended the protest, led to the first amendment of the Citizenship Act, 1955 in 1985, specifically addressing Assam’s case. Drawing from vernacular literature and archival records, this paper offers a fresh perspective on the political history of citizenship in Assam from pre-independence until the signing of the Assam Accord in 1985 and its immediate implementation.

Dehing Patkai National Park

Assam witnessed an unprecedented social media protest in the mid-2020 for the protection of the Dehing Patkai rainforest located in the eastern part of the state. This green movement was centred on the issue of legitimising illegal coal mining in the rainforest by the National Board for Wildlife during the nationwide lockdown. Tracing the journey of the national park, the present article argues that the controversy reflects the contradiction between the metropolitan and indigenous version of ecological nationalism. The latter, though instrumental for mass mobilisation in environmental movements, does not occupy adequate space in the electoral politics.

Flood, Displacement and Politics: The Assam Chapter

Floods and river bank erosion is a deadly menace for millions of people, specifically for the marginalised population in Assam. Assam can only progress by solving the perennial flood problem of the state. This paper shows how the natural disaster and the resultant internal displacements of people have been used to fan the exclusionary politics of citizenship in Assam.

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