Wednesday, Jan 22, 2020 | Last Update : 04:57 PM IST

Protests against Citizenship Bill bring Guwahati to a halt

THE ASIAN AGE.
Published : Nov 23, 2019, 2:15 am IST
Updated : Nov 23, 2019, 2:15 am IST

KMSS leader Akhil Gogoi said that political rights of the indigenous people would be snatched as soon as they CAB is passed by Parliament.

Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti adviser Akhil Gogoi and supporters raise slogans at a protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill in Guwahati on Friday. 	(Photo: PTI)
 Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti adviser Akhil Gogoi and supporters raise slogans at a protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill in Guwahati on Friday. (Photo: PTI)

Guwahati: The Central government is yet to decide the date for tabling the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill in Parliament, but mere indication has triggered protest in Assam where leaders and activists of All-Assam Students Union (Aasu) and 30 allied organisations took out a massive torchlight procession.

Asserting that Assam won’t take the burden of illegal migrants coming to the state after the cut-off date fixed by the Assam Accord, irrespective of their religion, the students’ body reiterated that the indigenous population of the entire state was united against the CAB and it cannot be forced on the people of Assam or the Northeast states.

Student organisations and ethnic groups representing various indigenous communities of the state have extended their full support to the movement. Accordingly, processions were taken out by different organisations in several places across the state. The protesters made it clear that under no circumstances the Centre’s move to give shelter to illegal migrants would be tolerated by the region’s people.

If torchlight procession disrupted the normal life in Guwahati on Thursday night, the Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti (KMSS) on Friday choked the vehicular movement of the capital city by organising massive protest to what they called— Raj Bhavan Gherao.

KMSS leader Akhil Gogoi said that political rights of the indigenous people would be snatched as soon as they CAB is passed by Parliament. He called upon the people of the state to oppose CAB to save their rights. “If some one is not opposing the CAB, he/she can’t be an Assamese,” he said. He warned that, at present, there are 20 lakh Bangladeshi in the state. “If the CAB is passed more than 1.70 crore (population of Hindu Bengali in Bangladesh) Bangladeshi will get the chance to enter Assam easily,” he claimed.

Another group — Indigenous Forum Assam — also organised a separate protest by organising a sit-in demonstration against the CAB. The representative from Nagaland, Tripura and other Northeastern states also participated in the protest and reiterated that they wouldn’t allow parliament to pass the CAB.

The protestors said that the bill breach the clause of historic Assam Accord which states that all illegal immigrants who came Assam from Bangladesh after 1971, irrespective of their religion, are to be detected and deported.

It is significant that proposed CAB has the cut of date of December 31, 2014 implying that anyone who has entered Assam till this date would be granted citizenship.

Tags: citizenship (amendment) bill
Location: India, Assam, Guwahati (Gauhati)