Three years after its founding, a museum in honor of the legacy of Panchanan Pharma, a prominent leader of Rajpanshi and social reform, has collapsed in Kalisamari village in Cooch Behar.
The state museum located on the campus, where 55-year-old Timir Kumar Parma was born, shows politicians providing lip service to Rajputs. Both TMC and BJP are fighting for the largest list caste group in West Bengal, which has an estimated population of 50 lakhs – especially at the beginning of elections, as they affect at least 26 seats in North Bengal districts of Cooch Behar. Can, Jalpaiguri and Alipur. , Uttar Dinajpur and Thaksin Dinajpur (polling took place on April 10 in this region).
Both the Trinamool and the BJP worshiped at my house before starting their campaign in Cooch Behar … Recently, land was taken from here for the Ram temple in Ayodhya … while the Panchanan Pharma statues were built and a separate It is good to fight for the kingdom, The Rajpans. All we need is a job and a career, ”he said.
Since 2012, the Mamta Banerjee government has established Cooch Behar Panchanan Pharma University, two Rajbanshi language academies and a committee for community development. To participate in the elections, the Cooch Behar-based Narayani Police Battalion was announced, named after the army of the former state president Cooch Behar.
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In the same month, Home Minister Amit Shah summoned Anand Rai, a descendant of the royal family, and announced his battalion with a 200-crore statue of the Narayani Army-Central Paramilitary Force, Panchanan Pharma.
After losing his job as a tailor in Delhi following Kowit’s lockout in March 2020, 35-year-old Kokon Burman returned to the village of Pasim Kukumari, where he worked as a daily wage laborer. One in 300 families in the village depend on agriculture, or do odd jobs in big cities.
Echos Kokon Thimar, “Priority Jobs for Youth Like Me … No Jobs in North Bengal.” Although he earns Rs 5,000 per week in Delhi, he no longer has work for most of the day. “When I earn around 300 a day … Last year, I worked under MGNREGS for about 14 days. I had to feed my mother, wife and two-year-old son.”
TMC leader and North Bengal Development Minister Coochbehar Rabindranath Ghosh’s candidate from Nadapari assembly constituency said, Sati Cards Chief Minister has promised a minimum annual income of Rs. 12,000 for SC / ST … It is the center of creating barriers for development here. Locking and the government have also slowed down the pace of setting up businesses. ”
The 26-year-old, Nayan Roy, who had been working as a daily foreman to return to the village since the lockout, accused the Trinamool government of doing nothing to return migrants like himself. “I returned from Jaipur with my mother by paying Rs 10,000 for bus seats. Only two people in this entire village have a government job. Both are in the army.”
50-year-old Nanda Burman Pasim is a member of the Kukumari Panchayat. After spending a lifetime in the CPM, Nanda, who spent a year in the Trinamool when he won the 2018 panchayat elections, is now with the BJP. “Very little has been done for the village,” he said. “Even my failure. I also cannot protect concrete roads. ”
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The area is far from an old state of Cooch Behar, which moved into the Union of India in August 1949 and turned into a district in Bengal. The Rajpans are fighting for recognition of their distinct identity, which has led to several movements for a separate state, including organizations such as the Kamatapur People’s Party (KPP) and the Greater Cooch People’s Association, and armed terrorist groups. Such as the Kamatapur Liberation Organization (KLO).
For this assembly, several smaller groups seeking a separate state aligned themselves with the Kamatapur People’s Party (United), a faction of the original KPP. The coalition fielded independents with a large royalty population in at least 40 seats.
Over the years, the state government has hired more than 500 ex-combatants and other KLO allies to kill the movement. These include 50-year-old Bulstia Burman, a former KLO commander who now works as a home guard.
“In 1996, I was one of the first group to train in the jungles of Bhutan,” Bulastia said. Still facing time-related lawsuits, he dreams of a different state, but adds up. “At the moment, it’s a long way. Like many KLO members, I got a job. But many young people have no choice but to leave Cooch Behar and work in big cities.”
Rajbanshi, the committee member who founded the Panchanan Museum, and Madhusudan Ray Sarkar, a retired central government employee, said work was the only way to bring the community into the mainstream. He said that the benefit of SC reservation did not reach the Rajputs. “They are the dominant group in North Bengal. They should have 50% reservation in education and government jobs.”