Nellie massacre
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Coordinates: 26.111483°N 92.317253°E The Nellie massacre[1] took place in Assam during a six-hour period in the morning of 18 February 1983 by Indian BSF. The massacre claimed the lives of 2,191[2] people (unofficial figures run at more than 5,000) from 14 villages[3]—Alisingha, Khulapathar, Basundhari, Bugduba Beel, Bugduba Habi, Borjola, Butuni, Indurmari, Mati Parbat, Muladhari, Mati Parbat no. 8, Silbheta, Borburi and Nellie—of Nagaon district.[4] Most of the victims were Bengali-speaking Muslims (specially Bangladeshi) who had immigrated to the region illegally. A group of media personnel passing by the region were witness to the massacre.[5]
The massacre was one of many violent incidents during the infamous 1983 elections conducted in the midst of the Assam Agitation.[6] The elections were declared against the wishes of the Assam Agitation leaders who did not want an election till the electoral rolls were cleansed of alleged illegal immigrants who were collaborating with the Pakistani Army in 1971[citation needed]. These illegal immigrants allegedly supported the Pakistani Army and their supporters in Bangladesh to hunt down Mukti Bahini guerilla fighters[citation needed], and never returned to Bangladesh because of fear of backlash from Mukti Bahini after the independence of Bangladesh[citation needed].
Contents [hide]
1 The onslaught
2 Aftermath
3 See also
4 References and Notes
5 Further reading
6 External links
[edit]1 The onslaught

On February 17, 1983 two truckload police contingents came to Borbori and assured the inhabitants that they are patrolling nearby and full security has been provided to them. Being assured of security by the security personnel,Bihari Muslim residents of Nellie went to work outside as usual on February 18, 1983. At around 8-30 AM, suddenly the village was attacked by mobs from three sides surrounding the villagers and pushing them towards river Kopili.[4] People armed with sharp weapons, spears, and a few guns, advanced towards Nellie in an organized manner. The attackers encircled the whole village and left open the side that ends towards river Kopili. There were attackers in boats too. Killing started at around 9 am and continued till 3 pm.[4] Most of the victims were women and children. CRPF arrived around 3 PM.[4] It is alleged that the police officers of Assam who were deployed to keep law and order did not discharge their duty properly. These officers’ apparent lack of responsibility to take timely action at that crucial hours aggravated the already grave situation to a further extent.[7]

The survivors were taken to Nagaon police station. Most of the survivors were put into Nellie camp at Nagaon and they returned to their village after 14 days upon restoration of normalcy.
[edit]2 Aftermath

The government gave the survivors of Nellie compensation for each death of as little as 5,000 rupees, contrasted for instance with Rs. 7 lakhs that have been paid to survivors of the Sikh carnage of a year later in 1984. Six hundred and eighty eight criminal cases were filed in connection with Nellie organised massacre and of these only 310 cases were charge-sheeted.[8] The remaining 378 cases were closed due to the police claim of “lack of evidence”. But all the 310 charge-sheeted cases were dropped by the AGP government as a part of Assam Accord; therefore not a single person has even had to face trial for the gruesome massacre.
A Commission of Inquiry was instituted under Tribhubhan Prasad Tiwary, the report of which has not been made public. There is enough evidence to suggest that successive local governments, belonging to both the Congress[9] and the AGP,[10] have suppressed information about the massacre.Even academic discussions on this gruesome massacre were discouraged by the Assamese authorities.[11]
Some Muslims of the region feels that ‘The Assam agitation’ which began in protest against the “exploitative practices of outsiders”, including Bengali bureaucrats, Marwari businessmen, sundry moneylenders, contractors and other carpetbaggers from different regions of India, but subsequently it turned deftly into an anti-Muslim (especially anti-bihari Muslim) affair.[12] The witch hunt that followed the communal hysteria did not only hurt the alleged “Bihari Muslims” but also the Assamese Muslims.[12]
Demographically, today Nellie is a predominantly Muslim majority area.[13]
[edit]3 See also

Nellie, 1983
25 years on.. Nellie still haunts
List of massacres in India
[edit]4 References and Notes

^ (Kumura 2007)
^ (Assam Tribune 2008)
^ (Rehman 2006)
^ a b c d Azad, Anju. “Recalling Nellie 1983- Assam”. Ummah Forum. Retrieved 2011-12-08.
^ (Lahkar 2008)
^ Goel, Rekha. “25 years on…Nellie still haunts”. The Statesman. Retrieved 2011-12-08.
^ Rehman, Teresa. “An Untold Shame”. Tehelka Magazine. Retrieved 2011-12-08.
^ Karim, Abdul. “Nellie Massacre in Assam”. Karim 74. Retrieved 2011-12-08.
^ The Indian National Congress is a national political party that came to power in Assam based in large part to the “Muslim” vote (Gokhale 2005), and seen to be a protector of Muslim interests.
^ The Assam Gana Parishad is a regional political party that was formed by the Assam Agitation leaders after the conclusion of the agitation.
^ Kimura, Makiko. “Assam has learnt no lesson”. The Milli Gazette Vol 5 No 23. Retrieved 2011-12-08.
^ a b Alam, Mohammad Manzoor. “On the Brink of Xenophobia”. Counterpoint. Retrieved 2011-12-08.
^ Gokhale, Nitin. “Who is Responsible for Nellie Massacre”. India- Behind The Lens. Retrieved 2011-12-08.
[edit]5 Further reading

Assam Tribune (2008-02-19), “’83 polls were a mistake: KPS Gill”, The Assam Tribune, retrieved 2008-02-19
Lahkar, Bedabrata (2008-02-18), “Recounting a Nightmare”, The Assam Tribune, retrieved 2008-03-24
Gokhale, Nitin (2005-07-02), “The Simple Safety of Numbers”, Tehelka, retrieved 2008-03-24
“Review of the book 25 years on…Nellie still haunts”, The Statesman, 2008-03-31[dead link]
Gokhale, Nitin (2005-07-16), “Vote banks pay dividends”, Tehelka, retrieved 2008-02-19
Kumura, Makiko (2007-03), “The Nellie Massacre” (– Scholar search), Himal Southasian (Kathmandu) 20 (3), retrieved 2008-02-19[dead link][dead link]
Rehman, Teresa (2006-09-30), “Nellie Revisited: The Horror’s Nagging Shadow”, Tehelka, retrieved 2008-02-19
Chadha, Vivek, Low Intensity Conflicts in India. Sage Publications, 2005.
Saksena, N.S. “Police and Politicians” in Alexander, P.J. (ed.) Policing India in the New Millennium. Allied Publishers, 2002.
[edit]6 External links

Nellie 1983: A series by TwoCircles.net

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