The Dibrugarh district unit of All Assam Students’ Union (AASU) along with 28 organisations on Thursday staged a mass protest at the old high school field here in protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016.
Several organisations including the Asom Sahitya Sabha, All Assam Karmachari Parishad, Chamber of Commerce, various youth and students’ group, women’s’ forum, school and college students, senior citizens and members of the civil society participated in the protest.
“We want to make it clear to the government that a state-wide agitation involving every section of the society would be launched if the government fails to scrap the controversial bill. According to Assam Accord, people who came to Assam after March 24, 1971 should treated as illegal migrants but now the BJP is trying to grant citizenship on the basis of religion which goes against the interest of the people of Assam. The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 should be scrapped since it is a threat to the culture, language and identity of Assamese people,” said Sankar Jyoti Baruah, general Secretary of AASU, Dibrugarh unit.
Baruah said, “Centre should specifically adhere to the clauses of the Assam Accord signed in 1985. Anyone who has entered Assam after March 24, 1971 should be treated as an illegal migrant irrespective of one’s religious affiliation. There should be no tinkering with the Assam Accord.”
The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill which was tabled in the parliament in August, 2016 seeks to amend the Citizenship Act, 1955. The bill seeks to give citizenship to religious minorities from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan who have come here till December 31 of 2014.