Sikkim Congress president
Sikkim Pradesh Congress Committee (SPCC) president Bharat Basnet. Image credit - YouTube

The Sikkim Congress has strongly opposed the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB), 2019 and the National Register of Citizens (NRC).

Sikkim Pradesh Congress Committee (SPCC) president Bharat Basnet said the implementation of the CAB and NRC will violate the provisions of the Article 371F.

Addressing a press conference at Gangtok on Saturday, Basnet said, “Both CAB and NRC are not in the interests of the people of Sikkim.”

Also read: Anti-CAB protests getting louder in Assam

He asserted that the Centre should first understand the history of Sikkim before implementing the CAB and NRC in the state.

The SPCC president said Sikkim was an independent nation before 1975 and merged with India under an understanding.

Also read: Amit Shah to introduce CAB in Lok Sabha on Monday

He added that Sikkim has been provided special protection under the Article 371F of the Constitution and thus the old laws of Sikkim have still remained protected.

Basnet also asserted that protection should be provided to the people of Sikkim on the basis of the old laws of Sikkim.

Basnet mentioned that the citizenship to the people of Sikkim was provided as per the Sikkim Subject Regulation Act, 1961 and the people registered in the Sikkim Subject Register became the citizens of India during merger.

He said, “In such a situation who will accept NRC?”

While lashing out at the ruling Sikkim Krantikari Morcha (SKM) party, the SPCC president stated that the SKM government should fulfil its promises made before the election.

He alleged the SKM party initially protested against the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) but it has failed to raise any voice against it after coming to power.

Sagar Chhetri

Sagar Chhetri is Northeast Now Correspondent in Gangtok. He can be reached at: sagchhetri@gmail.com