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Community in news: Miyas of Assam

  • IASbaba
  • November 5, 2020
  • 0
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Community in news: Miyas of Assam

Part of: GS Prelims and GS-I – Society

In news

  • Recently, a proposed Miya museum reflecting the culture and heritage of the people living in char-chaporis has stirred up a controversy in Assam.

Important value additions 

Miyas of Assam

  • The ‘Miya’ community comprises descendants of Muslim migrants from East Bengal (now Bangladesh) to Assam.
  • They came to be referred to as ‘Miyas’, often in a derogatory manner.
  • The community migrated in several waves — starting with the British annexation of Assam in 1826, and continuing into Partition and the 1971 Bangladesh Liberation War. 
  • Their Migration has resulted in changes in demographic composition of the region.
  • Years of discontent among the indigenous people led to the six-year-long (1979-85) anti-foreigner Assam Agitation to weed out the “illegal immigrant”, who was perceived as trying to take over jobs, language and culture of the indigenous population.

Char-chaporis

  • Char-chaporis are shifting riverine islands of the Brahmaputra. 
  • These are primarily inhabited by the Muslims of Bengali-origin.
  • A char is a floating island while chaporis are low-lying flood-prone riverbanks.
  • While Bengali-origin Muslims primarily occupy these islands, other communities such as Misings, Deoris, Kocharis, Nepalis also live here.

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