As most of the organisations and political parties across Assam have raised their voice against implementation of the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill 2018, the socio-cultural, women’s and students’ organisations also took to the streets in Digboi on Monday demanding withdrawal of the Bill.
The mass protest rally, organized under the aegis of the All Assam Students’ Union (AASU), a leading students’ body in Assam, was started from Swahid Bedi Tiniali at Digboi in Tinsukia district and culminated at Borbil en route to the oil town on NH 38.
Lending support to the voices of dissent over the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, hundreds of student and other activists staged demonstrations with banners, placards and pamphlets registering their protests against the indifferent attitude of the BJP Government at the Centre regarding the Bill.
The protestors exhibiting solidarity during the ongoing movement said that the agitation is sure to assume a sharp u-turn on an extensive height if the government turns deaf ears towards the cries of the people of the State quoting ‘Dekhot Koi Mumai Dangor Nohoy’.
According to Nikhil Koch, secretary of the Tinsukia District unit of AASU, the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 was introduced in the Lok Sabha to amend the Citizenship Act, 1955.
A key amendment in the Bill seeks to grant citizenship to persecuted minorities from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan after six years of their staying in India. Koch said they would continue the stir till the time the Government concedes to their demands which otherwise is detrimental for the existence of the people of Assam grossly affecting the entire demography.
“The proposed poisonous capsule in the form of the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill is one among the many examples that establishes the intentions and designs of the lawmakers in our country that they have a very little regard for the indigenous populace of Assam and the entire northeastern region,” Koch regretted.
“The continued and unabated influx of refugees and undocumented migrants from the neighboring countries, especially Bangladesh, has threatened the existence of indigenous people,” said Punya Saikia, a social worker of Digboi and a State literary pensioner.