BJP offices locked by protesters in Assam

BJP offices locked by protesters in Assam

Protesters against the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill 2016 in Assam locked some district offices of BJP, burnt tyres and effigies of leaders of the saffron party as part of their 12-hour Northeast shut down on Wednesday.

The bandh supporters shouted slogans against BJP alleging that the bill was a ploy of the saffron party to destruct ethnic identity, culture and language of the indigenous Assamese and impose Hindutva ideology.

"People of Assam voted BJP in 2014 Lok Sabha polls and 2016 Assembly elections as it promised to protect jati (community), mati (land) and bheti (home) but now they are trying to give citizenship to Hindu Bangladeshis by passing the bill.

This is against the secular character of our Constitution. We will never accept this. We have resorted to the extreme step like a bandh as our peaceful and democratic protests have been ignored by BJP and their leadership," general secretary of All Assam Students' Union, Lurinjyoti Gogoi said. 

He said this was the first Northeast bandh after the Independence, which was supported by all organisations and the influential student bodies across the region. 

The bandh comes a day after Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) quit its alliance with the BJP-led state government as its protest against the bill.

The bill seeks to offer citizenship to non-muslim migrants from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan, who had migrated to India due to 'religious persecution,' after a stay of six years. The same is 12 years at present.

Many organisations in the Northeast are opposed to the bill saying this would make the 'large Hindu illegal migrants' already living in the region Indian citizens. They fear the move will reduce them into minority and nullify Assam Accord of 1985. The accord promised to detect, delete and deport illegal migrants by updating the National Register of Citizens (NRC) with March 24, 1971, as the cut off date.


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