NEW DELHI: A day after violent protests erupted in the Northeastern states over the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill’s passage in the Lok Sabha, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Rajnath Singh sought to reassure the people of the Northeast.
The PM, while addressing a rally in Maharashtra, said, “I want to assure my brother and sisters of Assam and the Northeast, the youth there, that their rights will not be harmed.”Singh reiterated that the government was committed to preserving the distinct culture and identity of the Northeast.
The Bill, which has caused a rift between the BJP and its allies in the Northeastern states, was passed by the Lok Sabha on Tuesday amid protests by opposition parties who termed it as “divisive” and “flawed”.
The Bill was not tabled in the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday.
The home minister said he was aware of the concerns regarding the Bill as well as misconceptions being spread about it but would like to dispel the apprehensions of the people of Assam and the Northeast. Singh said the burden of the Bill by way of supporting migrants would not be borne by Assam or the Northeast alone but the whole country will accommodate the new citizens.“Citizenship would only be given to people after scrutiny and recommendations of district authorities and state governments,” he said.