IMPHAL: Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh appealed to the people not to panic over the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 even as a 24-hour general strike has been called from Wednesday midnight demanding withdrawal of the bill.
The apprehensions of the people need to be removed first and the Centre will be urged not to let the bill impact the state, he told reporters on the sidelines of a programme here.
The recently formed Manipur People Against Citizenship Amendment Bill (MPACAB), with representation from 66 organisations, has called the general strike demanding the controversial bill be withdrawn.
The chief minister said the government is trying to clear doubts regarding the Citizenship Bill from the minds of the people.
The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, which was passed in the Lok Sabha on January 8, seeks to provide Indian citizenship to non-Muslim nationals from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan after six years of residence in India.
Biren Singh said he will be attending a meeting of chief ministers of all northeastern states "probably day after tomorrow."
Meanwhile, the opposition Congress slammed the government for indulging in "delay tactics" and reiterated that the bill must not be passed under any circumstance.
Former chief minister O Ibobi Singh told reporters that state legislators were not been able to take a firm stand on the bill unlike the Nagaland cabinet.
The Nagaland cabinet has rejected the bill following pressure from various tribal organisations and student bodies.
Ibobi Singh said a Congress team is leaving for the national capital to oppose the passage of the bill in the Rajya Sabha.