NESO, KMSS to protest against citizenship bill

GUWAHATI, Dec 7: The North East Students’ Organisation (NESO) and the Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti (KMSS), who are opposing the Citizenship Amendment Bill, 2016, have decided to launch protests against it before and during the coming winter session of Parliament.
The NESO, comprising the leading student organisations of the seven northeastern states, have taken the decision to protest against the bill before the parliament when it is in session on 19 December, its advisor Samujjal Bhattacharya told reporters here on Friday.
“We cannot allow the bill to be passed at any cost and we will continue to protest against it as the Northeast is not a dumping ground for illegal Bangladeshis,” he said.
The bill, he said, violates the historic Assam Accord of 1985 and threatens to nullify the ongoing process of preparing the updated National Register of Citizens in Assam.
“The Centre must realize none of the Northeast states are alone. All the seven states of Assam, Mizoram, Meghalaya, Manipur, Arunachal Pradesh, Tripura and Nagaland are united in our fight to protect our identity, language and culture,” he said.
The KMSS along with 69 other indigenous and supporting organisations will stage an indefinite hunger strike in New Delhi from 9 December, ahead of the parliament’s winter session, demanding the scrapping of the bill.
“The BJP government is misleading the people, have gone against the constitution and has threatened the very identity of the indigenous people of the state if it is passed by the parliament,” KMSS chief Akhil Gogoi told reporters here.
Two teams have already left for Delhi to participate in the hunger strike, and another team will leave by Saturday, Gogoi added.
The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, was introduced in the Lok Sabha to amend the Citizenship Act, 1955, to grant Indian citizenship to Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians who fled religious persecution in Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan and entered India before 31 December, 2014. (PTI)