Anti-CAA protest
Representative photo. Image credit - @tbdnews

The Assam Association of North America has written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressing concern over the recently-passed Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), 2019.

In its letter to the PM, the association said: “We see this Act as a threat to the integrity and unabridged continuity of language, culture, demographics and economic wellbeing of the indigenous population of Assam and the northeast.”

As massive protests against the CAA continue in different parts of India, mainly in Assam, the association has urged the PM to fully implement the Assam Accord which was signed in 1985, without any delay.

Also read: Assamese community stages anti-CAA protest in Pune

Assamese people, living in America and London, have also registered protests against the CAA, 2019.

It may be mentioned that as per the Assam Accord, March 24, 1971, was fixed as the cut-off date to identify, detect and deport illegal foreigners.

Assam Accord was signed following the six-year-long Assam Agitation during which 855 martyrs sacrificed their lives.

Also read: SC refuses stay on CAA

But according to the CAA, 2019, persons belonging to Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi and Christian communities who came to India from Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh till December 31, 2014 would be granted Indian citizenship.

In the letter, the association said the Assam Accord must prevail for the interest of the indigenous people of Assam.

Also read: Opposition seeks CAA rollback

“In case of any conflict between the CAA and the Assam Accord, the Assam Accord must prevail in order to ensure primacy in the public interest of the indigenous population of Assam,” a media report quoted the association as saying in the letter.

The association also urged Modi to protect and preserve the cultural, social and linguistic identity of the indigenous people of Assam while granting citizenship to refugees.

“While granting citizenship and settling refugees, take necessary steps to protect and preserve the cultural, social and linguistic identity of the indigenous people of Assam,” the association said.

The association demanded that the National Register of Citizens (NRC), the final list of which was published on August 31 this year, be updated with necessary corrections to enable complete implementation of the Assam Accord.

The NRC for Assam was published with the deletion of over 19 lakh names.

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