In a latest development, the Assam legislators will also be allowed to speak in Bodo language in the state Assembly. The decision comes after a special meeting that featured Assam Legislative Assembly speaker Biswajit Daimary who represents the Bodo community.
The special meeting which was attended by several legislators, important dignitaries of the Bodo community, and various members of Bodo organisations — came to this decision that they shall provide a platform for the legislators to use their mother tongue in the house.
Recently, the Bodo language had received recognition by the state government as the associate official language of Assam.
Assamese, also called “Asomiya”, is the official language of Assam.
After an appeal by the previous government to send a “positive message to the indigenous people”, the opposition withdrew all its amendments and The Assam Official Languages (Amendment) Bill, 2020, was passed unanimously on the last day of the three-day winter session held on December, 2020.
Before the enactment of this bill, Bodo was an official language only in some specified Bodo majority areas.
Congress MLA Kamalakhya Dey Purkayastha said that there are over 90 lakh Bengali speaking people in Assam as per the 2011 census and the number of Bodo speaking population in the state is just slightly over 14 lakh.
“We have no problem with Bodo being given the status of an associate official language. But, we demand the same status for Bengali language also. We feel that the Bengali language is being neglected and discriminated against,” he added.