A home ministry-appointed committee has recommended that two-third seats in the Assam Assembly should be reserved for the indigenous people of the state and 1951 should be the cut-off year to define the local population, people familiar with the matter said on Monday.
The committee has also suggested creation of a legislative council (Upper House) for Assam and introduction of the Inner Line Permit (ILP) to control the movement of people from outside the state, they said.
For the reservation of seats for indigenous people in Assam Assembly, the 13-member panel has recommended two formulas, including a quota of two-third seats (67 %) for them.
In case of reservation of seats in the Assam Assembly and Lok Sabha constituencies from the state, all members, except three, have suggested that 67% seats should be reserved for the indigenous people. The remaining three members suggested that the reservation in legislative bodies should be 100%.
“We have mentioned that there is no dissenting note but there are two suggestions for the reservation of assembly and Lok Sabha seats,” a person familiar with the matter said.
In addition to the 67% reservation for the indigenous people, 16% will also be reserved for the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe communities. “So, effectively, the reservation will go up to 83% if it is accepted,” the person said.
Assam has a total of 126 assembly constituencies, while it sends 14 MPs to Lok Sabha.
The high-level committee, headed by Justice (Retd) Biplab Kumar Sharma, was set up by the home ministry to suggest ways to provide constitutional safeguards to Assam’s indigenous people.
The people familiar with the matter said the panel finalised its report last week, conveyed to the home ministry that it was ready to submit it to Union home minister Amit Shah and has sought an appointment with him.
The report is expected to be submitted this week itself.
The committee, according to the people, unanimously recommended that those who were residents of Assam in 1951 and their descendants, irrespective of community, caste, language, religion or heritage, will be considered as indigenous people of the state.
The committee was set up in July 2019 as per the Clause 6 of the 1985 Assam Accord.