AASU to launch indefinite protests against Citizenship Amendment Bill


Guwahati, May 22: All Assam Students Union (AASU) along with other organisations in the state will launch indefinte protests against the Citizenship Amendment Bill, 2016, to ensure that it is not enacted, AASU advisor Samujjal Bhattacharya said today.
The present government in Assam had come to power with the promise to protect the identity and resources of the indigenous people but it not kept it, Bhattacharya alleged while speaking to newsmen here today.
He also urged all deputy commissioners and officials engaged in the ongoing updation of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) to ensure that no name of any illegal Bangladeshi were included.
A key amendment in the Bill seeks to grant citizenship to people without valid documents from six minority communities — Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan after six years of residence in India.
It has lead to widespread protests in the North East. A 16-member Joint Parliamentary Committee headed by BJP MP Rajendra Agarwal had visited Assam and Meghalaya from May 7 to May 10 to elicit views from stakeholders on the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, which was introduced in the Lok Sabha to amend the Citizenship Act, 1955.
Bhattacharya said a ‘mass fasting’ will be held here from 6 am to 5 pm on May 29, which will be followed by a ‘mass satyagraha’ at a later date.
“We (AASU and other organisations) held a meeting here today with different students, tribal, literary, cultural and other organisations. It was decided that we will jointly agitate against the Bill and will not allow it to be enacted,” he said.
Serial protests against the Bill will continue in all the district headquarters of the state, he said.
“The Bill is absolutely communal and will tarnish the secular image of the country. We cannot allow it to be imposed forcibly on the nation.
“We warn both the central and state governments not to impose the Bill and the Assam government in particular should take a cabinet decision, like its Meghalaya counterpart of not allowing the Bill to be imposed upon the state,” he added.
AASU had lead the six-year Assam Movement against illegal immigrants from Bangladesh which led to the Assam Accord of 1985. (PTI)