Glimmer of hope

Chief Minister Pema Khandu’s announcement on the floor of the state assembly on Tuesday that the government of Arunachal Pradesh is completely against the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) has come as huge relief to the people of the state.
Ever since BJP national president and Home Minister Amit Shah, during a general election campaign in Assam, declared that the saffron party will bring in the CAB if it comes back to power, there has been growing concern in the entire North East region.
The chief minister assuaged some of the concerns by announcing that Arunachal will ask the Centre to exclude the state from the provision of the CAB.
However, it is still early and it will be interesting to see how the central BJP leaders react to it.
It is believed that the last time Chief Minister Khandu announced that the state government would withdraw the anti-conversion law from the state, the central BJP leaders and the RSS were very annoyed with him.
Since then, he has never spoken about the anti-conversion law.
The CAB is the pet project of the BJP and the RSS to provide citizenship to the Hindus migrating from countries like Pakistan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, etc.
Under this law, Hindu, Buddhist, Sikh refugees and refugees of other religious groups will be given citizenship in India. Notably, the Chakma-Hajong and Tibetan refugees settled in Arunachal Pradesh, follow Hinduism and Buddhism.
Once the CAB is implemented in the state, these groups will be very likely given citizenship. This will entitle them to all benefits as citizens of India. This may also pave the way for them to claim ST status in the future, and therefore, the CAB poses a large scale threat to the state.
However, with Chief Minister Pema Khandu making it clear that state government will strongly oppose it, there is a glimmer of hope.

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