Bimala Prasad Chaliha

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Bimala Prasad Chaliha (26 March 1912 – 25 February 1971) was a Leader of Indian National Congress and a Freedom Fighter who was imprisoned at Jorhat Jail in 1942 for active participation in Mahatma Gandhi's Quit India Movement against the British Government. He was elected to the post of Chief Minister of Assam for Three Consecutive Terms, once from Badarpur Constituency and twice from Sonari Constituency. He was in office from 28 December 1957 to 6 November 1970. He was awarded Padma Vibhushan in 1971.

Quotes

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  • It is highly regrettable that the Government of Pakistan have never appreciated our genuine feelings and efforts for safeguarding the interest of the minorities in this country. The paternal role which they seek to assume over the minorities in India is not only presumptuous but is also extremely ridiculous. On the contrary, what consideration has been weighing with Pakistan in squeezing out the minorities from their country? Apart from the large numbers of refugees who migrated to India from Pakistan earlier, the influx of nearly 1,80,000 refugees belonging to the different religious groups from East Pakistan to Assam during the period from January, 1964 to January, 1965 is a clear evidence of the oppressive treatment meted out to the minority communities in Pakistan. So far as the minorities in the State of Assam are concerned, I can boldly say that they are quite happy and secure. If the Government of Pakistan continues to indulge in mischievous propaganda with a view to undermining the secular policy of the Government of India while deliberately concealing their lapses in providing securities to the minorities, they will be only doing harm to both the countries. I wish the Government of Pakistan could see reasons and refrained from such malicious propaganda.
    • Statement made by the CM on 27 July 1965, see ‘White Paper on Foreigners’ by Government of Assam, 2012. 56, Annexure 4. Government of Assam. White Paper on Foreigner’s Issue. Home and Political Department, October 2012. quoted in Nani Gopal Mahanta - Citizenship Debate over NRC and CAA_ Assam and the Politics of History (2021, SAGE Publications India)in 227
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