The Assamese community in London, deeply concerned over the threat posed by the proposed Citizenship (Amendment) Bill 2016, has submitted a memorandum to the High Commissioner of India, Y K Sinha opposing the same.
“If the bill is passed it will have a serious implication on the people of Assam regarding the demography, culture and the Assamese language. Our identity is at stake and our safety as non-resident Assamese,” Rini Kakati, Assam coordinator for UK of the organization, Friends of Assam and Seven Sisters, said.
A delegation of the Assamese community in London led by Benu Kakati, Rini Kakati, Apurba Baruah, Krishna Baruah, Sarada Sarma, Binu Sarma, Pallab Das and Amit Sarmah had last month met Y K Sinha, Indian High Commissioner to UK at India House, Aldwych, in this regard.
“His father Lt Gen SK Sinha, was former Governor of Assam whose immense contributions and effort to the welfare of Assam will always be remembered,” Kakati further said.
“People who are not Indian citizens are not covered by the Constitution of India. If a large number of vulnerable refugees from Bangladesh need to be given Indian citizenship, then these refugees should be settled by the Central Government all over India not only in Assam,” the memorandum stated.
The delegation requested Y K Sinha, to convey their concern to the appropriate government departments in New Delhi and particularly to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the chairman of the Joint Parliamentary Committee as the Indian government’s UK representative.
The memorandum pointed out that there was a strong probability that a significant beneficiary of this amendment would be Bangladeshi Hindus and would immigrate to Assam.
This would endanger the very existence of Assamese culture and Assamese identity. No other state faced such a risk and therefore those states were indifferent to this development.
Furthermore, the delegation joined hands with other global organizations of Assamese communities notably Global Assam Association to safeguard the legitimate interests of the indigenous people of Assam.