Citizenship (Amendment) Bill fears far from dispelled for political groups of North-East

Earlier, Rajya Sabha MP from Assam Biswajit Daimary had said that he was satisfied with the clarifications which the Home Minister made on the Citizenship Bill.

Published: 01st December 2019 08:09 AM  |   Last Updated: 01st December 2019 08:10 AM   |  A+A-

Cotton University students participate in a rally to protest the Citizenship Amendment Bill, in Guwahati

Cotton University students participate in a rally to protest the Citizenship Amendment Bill, in Guwahati (Photo| PTI)

GUWAHATI: Even as Union Home Minister Amit Shah is in the process of holding discussions with stakeholders to allay their apprehensions regarding the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, political and civil groups from the Northeast are far from convinced. After a discussion with Shah, Rajya Sabha member from Assam Biswajit Daimary had said that he was satisfied with the clarifications which the Home Minister made on the Citizenship Bill.

But, various organisations fear the Bill’s tweaked version would be more dangerous. “The Citizenship Bill will be more dangerous for Assam if some states of the Northeast, which are protected by Inner Line Permit and the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution, are kept outside its purview,” leader of  peasants’ body Krishak Mukti Sangram Samitee, Akhil Gogoi, said. He said Assam and Tripura would have to bear the burden of lakhs of illegal immigrants if the Bill becomes a law.

“Quoting Shah, Daimary said Clause 6 of the Assam Accord — which says “constitutional, legislative and administrative safeguards” shall be provided to “protect, preserve and promote the cultural, social, linguistic identity and heritage of the Assamese people” — will be implemented prior to the Bill’s passage. However, under this clause, there are no political and economic safeguards for Assam,” Gogoi said.

The All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) reiterated its resolve to keep opposing the “religion-based” Bill which seeks to grant Indian citizenship to “persecuted” non-Muslim immigrants. “We ask the Union Home Minister as to how the government will know if people were religiously persecuted. What machine does it have to detect persecution? Who will give the data on the people who came to Assam before December 31, 2014?” it asked.

The Congress, too, criticised the Centre’s move. Party leader Jairam Ramesh told journalists that the Congress would take into confidence all like-minded parties in putting up a fight against the Citizenship Bill as well as the proposed country-wide NRC. He alleged that by solely talking about the two issues, the Centre was trying to divert people’s attention from India’s precarious economic condition. 

Stay up to date on all the latest Nation news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp