The Achik Youth Welfare Organization (AYWO), an NGO of Meghalaya, on Saturday expressed its solidarity with all the NGOs of the northeastern region which have been protesting against the controversial Citizenship Bill, 2016.
The Meghalaya NGO, seeking unity among all in opposition to the Citizenship Bill, 2016, stated that they would launch a poster campaign on the theme ‘Save NE, Save Garo Hills’ in Tura and invited all to be a part of it.
A report published on Saturday by TNT quoted AYWO as stating: “The recent development in parliament and subsequent passing of CAB 2019, has breached the secular fabric of India and invaded our personal space for their own political benefit.”
The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 seeks to make illegal migrants, who are Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan, eligible for Indian citizenship.
The report quoted AYWO publicity secretary Lyiend Roshan Marak as saying: “From time immemorial, the tribes of NE India are self governed, independent and are proud of our culture, tradition and languages. Despite these uniqueness, the central government has proved that they don’t care about the well being of NE. They passed the Bill without consulting us as stakeholders. We refuse to be minority in our own homeland.”
The AYWO while referring to the British era claimed that the desire to live independently was recognised. “Their act clearly indicates that they have a little or no care for North Eastern people,” the NGO added.
The NGO also raised question over Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s assurance that the Bill would not affect the Northeast.
The NGO question: “If it is the matter of safety and security for the NE people, then, why did JPC fail to visit all North Eastern states except Barak Valley, Guwahati and Shillong? Why did they not seek consensus of the indigenous tribes of NE? Why this incomplete report?”