Two organizations of the neighbouring state of West Bengal including one influential Dalit association threatened to block National Highway 27 that connects Assam with rest of India if they are prevented from entering Assam during their ‘long march’ on September 23 against exclusion of Bengali Hindus from final draft NRC.
All India Namasudra Bikash Parishad and Sara Bharat Nagarik Mancha will take out a ‘long march’ on September 23 at 12 noon from Kamakhyaguri in North Bengal to Srirampur in Assam protesting exclusion of Bengali Hindus from the final draft of National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Assam.
The two organizations have refused to accept the ‘refugee theory’. They have demanded the government to pass a bill in the Parliament and accord the status of citizens to those Hindus who migrated to India from East Bengal and later became Indian voters.
Talking to Northeast Now over phone, working president of All India Namasudra Bikash Parishad, Mukul Chandra Bairagya said, “We have decided to take out the long march because we have found that around 30-32 lakh people out of 40 lakhs dropped from the final draft NRC are Hindus. Most of these people are Dalits. The government attitude towards these people is also surprising. The ruling party leaders termed them as ‘Ghuspetiya’ which is nothing but an insult to these people. Actually the government is trying to drive out these Indians through NRC.”
“If we are prevented from entering Assam, we will then block the roads leading to Assam,” he added.
While describing the figure of Hindus, Bairagya categorically pointed out that his organization is not against the Muslims.
Bairagya also said that many Hindus had migrated to India in 1951 and bought lands. “They were given chance to settle here and now government is saying that they are not citizens of India. Their names were there in the voters list but now they have been dropped from the NRC,” he fumed.
The AINBP leader said he is expecting a huge participation in the long march to express their solidarity with the ‘helpless people’ whose names were dropped from the final draft NRC.