ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Assam and the NRC

Deepankar Basu and Debarshi Das, in their article “Assam’s Politics and the NRC” (EPW, 1 February 2020), have raised a few critical issues regarding the fundamental flaws in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) updating process in Assam and emphasised building an alternative narrative. Their...

Handloom Weavers and Lockdown in Sualkuchi Cluster of Assam

After demonetisation in 2016, followed by imposition of the goods and services tax in the subsequent year, the COVID-19 lockdown has turned out to be a final nail in the coffin for the handloom sector in Assam. It has special importance in the informal economy of Assam since it is next to agriculture in creating employment opportunities. An examination of the Sualkuchi weaving cluster in Assam shows the many challenges the weavers, most of them women, face.

Infrastructuring Floods in the Brahmaputra River Basin

The effects of infrastructural projects in Assam that lead to floods in the Brahmaputra river are discussed. These projects play a prominent role in “engineering” floods, thereby creating hazardscapes and precarious conditions for the riverine communities. A people-centric approach involving these communities in the decision-making process is needed to curb the recurrent floods and their aftermath.

Recurring Flood Disasters

Integrated and long-term solutions are needed to mitigate the adverse impacts of floods.

Politics of Scheduled Tribe Status in Assam

The trajectory of six communities of Assam in demanding a Scheduled Tribe status is traced. The history of these tribes is elaborated upon and the struggles they have faced in claiming the ST status are adescribed along with detailing the operations of the various government committees that were formed to look into the matter.

Yaruingam (1960): Revisiting the Assamese Literary Classic and its Idea of People’s Rule

Birendra Kumar Bhattacharyya’s novel Yaruingam, written in the 1950s and finally published in 1960, was centred on the Naga movement for self-determination. In the post-colonial period, the novel has often been considered a landmark literary moment of Assamese literature, especially in the writing of political novels. Though focusing on the Naga movement, the novel was also as much about an early postcolonial Assamese literary imagination of “people’s rule.” Today, when questions of identity, democracy, and of the place of people in shaping the sociocultural and political future of North East India have become critical, this article examines how this early postcolonial novel dealt with some of these questions.

The Citizenship Question Should Also Interrogate the Insider-Outsider Binary

The National Register of Citizens in Assam has brought to the fore long-standing concerns over who the state recognises and who it deems foreign.

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