RGU and NERIST students taking out rally against Citizenship Act. Image credit: The Arunachal Times
RGU and NERIST students taking out rally against Citizenship Act. Image credit: The Arunachal Times

A massive protest rally against the Citizenship Act was taken out by thousands of students of Rajiv Gandhi University (RGU) and the North Eastern Regional Institute of Science & Technology (NERIST) on Friday.

The rally began from RGU campus in Rono Hills to Raj Bhawan and it was jointly organised by RGU Students’ Union (RGUSU) and NERIST Students’ Union (NERISTSU) in collaboration with NESO, AAPSU and RGU Research Scholars’ Forum.

Slogans were raised against the Citizenship Act, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

“This is one of the largest and the longest marched to have been organised in the state till date,” said one of the protesters.

“We want to know as to how will be Arunachal Pradesh be protected from illegal migrants even if it the state is exempted from the purview of the Citizenship Act?” asked a protester.

“What made the Pema Khandu-led state government think that Arunachal Pradesh is or will be safe when neighbouring Assam is burning and is in turmoil?” the protester further questioned.

“The government and our people are living under an illusion that Arunachal Pradesh’s exemption from Act would keep the state out of trouble,” the protester further said.

“The government must not forget that Arunachal Pradesh shares a long porous boundary with Assam and controlling the entry migrants from Assam into the state is almost impossible,” the protester added.

The protesters later submitted a memorandum to the Arunachal Pradesh Governor Brig (Retd) BD Mishra, demanding that either Citizenship Act is scrapped immediately or entire Northeast is exempted from it.

They also lashed out at union sports minister Kiren Rijiju and state BJP president Tapir Gao for voting in favour of the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Bill in Lok Sabha on Monday.

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