The Asom Jatiyatabadi Yuva Chatra Parishad on November 20th, 2019, staged a protest across the state against the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party-led government’s move to reintroduce the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Bill in the parliament.
The protesters also took out torch rally in different parts of the state and shouted slogans against the BJP demanding immediate withdrawal of the Bill.
A number of student organisations on November 9th, 2019, hit the streets of Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh against the Bill. The North East Students’ Organisation, in a memorandum to the Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Union Home Minister Amit Shah, expressed its unhappiness with the Center’s decision to reintroduce the Bill, which will ‘impose a burden of post-1971 Hindu Bangladeshis on the NE’.
On January 8th, 2019, the Bill was passed in the lower house of the parliament – Lok Sabha but lapsed in the Rajya Sabha. On May 7th, 2018, the joint parliamentary committee held a public hearing in Guwahati, which faced massive protest but received huge support in the Barak valley.
The Bill seeks to grant Indian citizenship to the people belonging to the Hindus, Jains, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists, and Parsis who have become the victims of religious persecution in Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan and entered India on or before December 31st, 2014.
Inputs: Hassinur Alom, Abhijit talukdar, Deepak Deka, Anil Sarma
Photo: Abhijit Talukdar, Hassinur Alom