JD(U) favours simultaneous polls, opposes Citizenship Bill

The JD(U) today favoured simultaneous elections but came out against the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, terming it a clear threat to indigenous languages and culture of Assam.

Published: 08th July 2018 08:31 PM  |   Last Updated: 08th July 2018 08:31 PM   |  A+A-

Nitish Kumar

Bihar CM and JD(U) chief Nitish Kumar (File | PTI)


NEW DELHI: The JD(U) today favoured simultaneous elections but came out against the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, terming it a clear threat to indigenous languages and culture of Assam.

In a resolution passed at the party's national executive meeting here, it asked the Centre to work towards mitigating the people's concerns about the bill.

Brought by the government in Parliament in 2016, the bill seeks to make Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians from Afghanistan, Bangladesh or Pakistan eligible for Indian citizenship after a stay of six years.

The JD(U) resolution said it has always favoured simultaneous polls, a proposal being backed strongly by the BJP-led NDA government at the Centre, as it will help curb the use of black money in an otherwise relentless election cycle in the country.

"This relentless electioneering has adversely impacted developmental activities, overall governance, national economy.

In order to contest the elections, political parties are obliged to arrange for funding from every imaginable source, often leading to increased corruption," it said.

The BJP ally sought a broad consensus among the political parties over holding of simultaneous polls for the state assemblies which are due for elections within one to two years of the Lok Sabha polls in 2019.

Underlining its opposition to the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, the JD(U) resolution cited the apprehensions expressed by the All Assam Students' Union (AASU) over the proposed measure, and said they have a strong basis.

"Any step which may jeopardise social peace and communal harmony of Assam and the whole North-East region, should be taken after serious consideration," it said.

Terming the bill a "clear threat to indigenous languages and culture of Assam", the resolution said it is apprehended that if the bill becomes a law, the indigenous people of Assam will be reduced to a minority in their home state and their economic, social and cultural survival will be at stake.

"We demand that the Government of India give serious consideration to all the contentious issues with regard to the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, and mitigate the concerns of the people of Assam," it said.

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