PM hails Bodo accord

New Delhi, Jan 30 (PTI) Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said the accord between Bodo groups and the government will strengthen the unity and integrity of Assam, pointing that the five-decade-old issue found resolution on the death anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.

The prime minister's remarks came on a day when 1,615 cadres of three NDFB factions laid down arms in Guwahati before Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal and state Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma.

The laying of arms comes three days after the Centre and the Assam government signed a peace accord with Bodo organisations NDFB and All Bodo Students' Union.

'I welcome decision of my Bodo friends for leaving violence and reposing faith in democracy and Constitution,' Modi said in a series of tweets.

He said that 'Bodo friends joining us on path of peace' sends a clear message that solution to issues is possible when the path of violence is left and faith is reposed in democracy and Constitution.

'I welcome my Bodo friends to the mainstream. We are committed to ensure development of Bodo areas,' the prime minister said.

He said the accord with the Bodo groups was made while protecting the interest of other communities of Assam.

'This is a victory for all, it's victory for humanity. It is inspired by the mantra of 'Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas & Sabka Vishwas', and by the spirit of 'Ek Bharat-Shresth Bharat',' Modi said.

He noted that the accord with the Bodos is a message to Assam and other violence-affected parts of the country.

'Nation's development can be given momentum only in an environment free of violence and fear. Happy that entire energy of our Bodo friends will further strengthen Assam's development,' he said.

As India remembers Bapu on his death anniversary, Assam is witnessing a historic chapter for peace and development, the prime minister said.

'After a wait of 50 years, agreement with our Bodo friends heralds a new beginning. It will strengthen Assam's unity, bring development and usher in a bright future,' he said. PTI NAB AAR