Dimapur, January 28: Good sense seems to have prevailed at last on the power that be ruling Nagaland with the State Cabinet on Monday coming out clearly that Nagaland opposes and rejects the Citizenship Amendment Bill 2016.
“As the State Government represents the will and desire of the people, the State Cabinet in its meeting held on 28th January, 2019 makes it amply clear that the State Government remains opposed and rejects the CAB,” the State Cabinet said. It assured the people of Nagaland that the State Government will leave no stone unturned to constantly protect the rights and privileges of the people and continue to undertake measures to further strengthen safeguards for our people.
This is the first time that the PDA Government in Nagaland has come out openly in opposing the Bill.
In its meeting today, the State Cabinet admitted that the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) has been an issue of much concern in Nagaland and the rest of the North Eastern region and there has been widespread resentment across the region from cross sections of society.
“The people of Nagaland have expressed their opposition and resentment to the CAB in various forms in a democratic manner and the State Cabinet took into account the will and desire of all sections of the people,” it said.
The Cabinet admitted that the PDA Government has always held the view that Nagaland is protected under Article 371 (A) of the Constitution of India and the ILP Regulations in that any person who acquires Indian citizenship through the Citizenship Amendment Bill, if passed in Parliament, will be ineligible for acquiring property or settling down in Nagaland.
Claiming that the State Government has from the very beginning expressed its opposition on the CAB and has also conveyed the same to the Government of India (GoI), the State Cabinet reminded that in its meeting held on 7th January, 2019 took the decision to appeal to the GoI to review the Bill before final passage in Parliament.
Furthermore, the State Cabinet in its meeting held on 18th January, 2019 reaffirmed its stand that Nagaland is protected under Article 371 (A) and the Chief Minister had written to the Union Home Minister informing the GoI on the Cabinet decision. The State Cabinet in acknowledging the genuine concern of all the North Eastern States expressed solidarity with our neighbouring States and accordingly the State Government had written to the GoI on 18.01.2019 appealing to the Centre to have wider consultations with all North Eastern States to ensure that the rights of the indigenous people of the region are fully protected, it said.
The State Cabinet said it also decided in its meeting held on 7th January 2019decided that a consultative meeting of all sections including tribal hohos, NGOs, civil societies, political parties, prominent citizens and all stakeholders would be held to form a consensus so that the stand and approach of the State Government would reflect the will and desire of the people. In this connection the State Government had decided to appeal to all sections to positively participate in the consultations with views and suggestions in the greater interest of our people.
The State Cabinet also reiterated the decision taken on its meeting held on 18th January 2019 that had taken the decision to refer the matter to the Standing Committee of the Nagaland Legislative Assembly on Article 371 (A) so that we can undertake measures to further strengthen the rights and the interests of the people.
The State Cabinet also observed today that with the ongoing political negotiations between the Government of India, the NSCN and the NNPGs undergoing a crucial stage, it is pertinent that appropriate measures are undertaken to ensure that the peace talks are not hampered in any manner and likewise any decision to impact the political scenario should be avoided at all costs. (Page News Service)