December 26, 2014
Mass killings and displacement must stop in Assam
WinG India, a network of women human rights defenders in India strongly condemns the recent mass killings of unarmed civilians belonging to marginalised group of tea labourers known as the Adivasis in the district of Sonitpur and BTAD of Assam on 23rd December, 2014 allegedly by National Democratic Front of Bodoland (Songbijit) faction killing over 75 persons mostly women and children. Three civilians are also killed by the police during a protest march after a day. WinG-India is deeply concerned over the frequent killings of unarmed civilians by the armed groups as well as by the state forces in the state as observed in the year 2014. WinG India appeals all the groups taking part in the ongoing armed conflict to refrain from violence and not to target civilians at any time.
WinG India also concerned over the recurring targeted mass massacres of marginalised and vulnerable communities resulting large number of internally displaced populations, loss of life and property. The state failed to provide security and to protect life and property of ordinary people at several parts of the state like Assam Nagaland border, BTAD etc and people are under constant fear psychosis for being displaced and loss of human life. It is evident from the killings taking place this year that vulnerable groups are at the receiving end of this armed conflict. In May 2014 and earlier in 2012, the Muslims were targeted by the armed groups and again in August 2014 and this time Adivasis are targeted.
WinG India is also equally concerned over the counter insurgency measures adopted by the government after this massacre. Media reported that the government is in the process of deploying more armed forces to flush out the alleged NDFB(S) group for killing the Adivasis and ‘discreet order’ has been given to the armed forces to contain the militant group within next two months ruling out any possibility of peace talks.
WinG India believes that India must recognise the situation as armed conflict situation in the line of international standard and adopt measures and policies to meet it’s obligations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and UNSCR 1325 and 1820. Authorities must also disarm all the surrendering/non-surrendering armed groups and must adopt the Global Arms Trade Treaty.
WinG India demands that authorities must provide immediate relief and rehabilitation and ensure access to justice by the victims through filing of FIRs, proper investigation, and fixing responsibility of the officers responsible for ensuring security and by bringing the perpetrators to trial and punishing them after a fair trial.
WinG India also urges all the parties in the armed conflict to address and resolve the root causes of the conflict for long lasting peace in the state.
About WinG-India ( www.wing-india.org)
WinG-India is a network of women who are striving to be agents of change in a world dominated by misogynist and caste mindset. WinG is a network of Dalit women (erstwhile untouchables), Adivasi and women affected by conflict in Northeast India and other parts of the country. The members of WinG-India represent marginalized communities across India and work towards promoting leadership within local governance. WinG-India was formed in 2009. The key focus area of WinG is women security (with a special focus on the implementation of UNSCR 1325), exploring customary laws and their impact on women’s lives. WinG operates as a non-political, non-religious and non-violent independent network of women activists.