Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC)

  • Category
    Governance
  • Published
    5th May, 2020

Assam Governor Professor Jagdish Mukhi has taken over the administration of the Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) after the expiry of the present Council’s term.

Context

Assam Governor Professor Jagdish Mukhi has taken over the administration of the Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) after the expiry of the present Council’s term.

About

  • The Bodoland Territorial Council was constituted under the Sixth Schedule to the Constitution of India in 2003 after the signing of Memorandum of Settlement on 10th February 2003 between the Government of India, the Government of Assam and Bodo Liberation Tigers, to fulfill economic, educational and linguistic aspiration and the preservation of land-rights, socio-cultural and ethnic identity of the Bodos; and to speed up the infrastructure in BTC area.
  • The Council aims at bringing about accelerated progress to one of the most backward region of the state of Assam with special focus on the development of the Bodo people in the field of education, preservation of land rights, linguistic aspiration, culture and its ethnic identity.
  • Area: The BTC’s jurisdiction is over four districts of Assam — Kokrajhar, Baksa, Chirang and Udalguri — and they are collectively known as Bodoland Territorial Administrative Districts.

Communities: Major communities residing in BTC include Bodos, Assamese , Bengalis, Koch-Rajbongshis, Rabhas, Garos , Adivasis, Muslims and Nepalies, etc.

Sixth schedule of the Constitution:

  • The Sixth Schedule of the Constitution of India (Articles 244(2) and 275(1)) provides for decentralized self-governance and dispute resolution through local customary laws in parts of the North East which are mainly tribal areas.
  • It contains provisions as to the Administration of Tribal Areas in the States of Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram.

Background:

  • Election to the 40 constituencies of the council, scheduled on April 4, could not be conducted in the wake of the lockdown imposed to contain the coronavirus outbreak.
  • In view of the expiry of the term of the Bodoland Territorial General Council, Governor Jagdish Mukhi has resolved to assume the administration of the BTC with immediate effect in public interest in exercise of powers vested in him under sub paragraph 2 of Para 16 of the Sixth Schedule to the Constitution of India.
  • Under Article 356 of the Constitution, if elections are postponed for unavoidable reasons like war, epidemic or natural disaster, the Governor may issue a proclamation after obtaining the consent of the President, wherein the executive authority is exercised through the Governor, who has the authority to appoint other administrators to assist him.
  • The administrators are usually non-partisan retired civil servants.

This order will take immediate effect and will, unless terminated earlier or extended further, remains in force for a period of six month. The decision will serve justice towards people of the region for good administration to fight against COVID-19.

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