Assam protest: Organisations to move SC against Act

Assam protest: Organisations to move SC against Act

Protesters demanded that the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, which received President Ramnath Kovind’s nod on Thursday night, be immediately scrapped to restore normalcy in Assam and in rest of the northeast. (AFP Photo)

Despite curfew, thousands of protesters staged an 11-hour hunger strike here on Friday and resolved to take forward the 'anti-foreigner' agitation peacefully, while at least four organisations have decided to move the Supreme Court to scrap the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 (CAA).

No fresh violence was reported on Friday but the administration did not withdraw the curfew and mobile internet restriction imposed in Guwahati and in at least 12 districts of Assam.

The curfew was relaxed in Dibrugarh and Jorhat in East Assam for five hours but was reimposed at 1 pm.

Protesters demanded that the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, which received President Ramnath Kovind’s nod on Thursday night, be immediately scrapped to restore normalcy in Assam and in rest of the northeast.

Curfew was still on in Meghalaya capital Shillong, where violent protest broke out on Thursday night.

Prominent writers, singers, educationists and Ulfa leaders (in ceasefire) took part in the hunger strike convened by All Assam Students’ Union (Aasu) and addressed the crowd.

Police, on the other hand, arrested at least 30 people for their alleged involvement in the violent protests since Wednesday.

Two protesters died in police firing in Guwahati. While another died after his shop was set on fire in Tinsukia district in eastern Assam. At least 26 others, who were injured in police firing, were hospitalised in Guwahati.

AASU president Dipankar Nath said, “since Narendra Modi government didn’t listen to the concerns to the people of Assam, we have no option but to keep the fight on. We will continue our agitation peacefully but I want to appeal to everyone to be careful about a section who is trying to disturb the agitation by resorting to violence.”

Chairman of Ulfa, a militant group in ceasefire, Arabinda Rajkhowa said that they would not allow the government to implement the CAA in Assam.

AASU, Assam Public works (APW), Northeast indigenous people’s forum and Badruddin Ajmal led-AIUDF have decided to file separate petitions in the Supreme Court to scrap the Act.

BJP leaders resign

At least 3 BJP leaders in Assam resigned since Thursday and Joined the public protests against the CAA.

Prominent Assamese actors, Jatin Bora and Ravi Sarma, resigned from the party, while Jagadish Bhuyan, chairman of Assam Petrochemicals Ltd, also quit the Saffron party.

Shortage of Oxygen, food items

Hospitals in Guwahati and in rest of Assam are running short of oxygen cylinders due to the blockades by the agitators, while thousands ran short of essential commodities due to the curfew, which is on since Thursday.

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