By- Staff Reporter | Date- April 21, 2012
Assam, Guwahati including, greeted Prime Minister Manmohan Singh with a complete shutdown on Friday. The 12 hour long bandh called by outlawed ULFA against Singh’s visit was completely observed across the state, affecting normal life and business.
Guwahati streets wore a deserted look with shops and business establishments remaining shut till evening. Vehicles remained off the roads. Schools and colleges too were closed. State government offices functioned as usual following strict warnings from the government but still saw low turnout of employees across the state.
Later in the evening, after the Prime Minister left for New Delhi, the ULFA sent out a press release thanking the people of Assam for observing the Bandh and supporting the call of the outfit. In an email sent to Times of Assam, Central Publicity Wing member of ULFA Joy Asom criticized Singh for faking his identity as an Assamese and condemned Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi for projecting him as an Assamese.
The Prime Minister, on the other hand while inaugurating the platinum jubilee celebrations of the state legislative assembly in Guwahati said I remain deeply indebted to the people of Assam for accepting me and making me feel like one of them. I was born in a distant village in a part of this subcontinent that is no longer in India. At a tender age, I became homeless and a migrant. It is in Assam that I finally found a home, which has given me a sense of belonging.
Singh expressed satisfaction over the progress of development made by Assam in recent years and stated that he would like to see Assam emerge as a new engine of growth for the northeast and the country as a whole in the 12th Five Year Plan period. I am confident that in the 12th Plan, Assam will be able to record a growth rate of over 9 per cent, – stated The Prime Minister.