BJP betrayed Assam after winning elections, says AASU

BJP betrayed Assam after winning elections, says AASU

"We had accepted the illegal migrants who had settled between 1947 and 1971 and we will not accept anyone anymore, be it Hindu, Muslim or Christian," said AASU advisor and senior leader Samujjal Kumar Bhattacharjya. Photo/Facebook (@AssamAASU)

The All Assam Students Union (AASU) on Thursday alleged that the BJP has betrayed the people of Assam by passing the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill after winning the elections where it proposed protecting ethnic identity, culture and language of Assamese.

“People of Assam voted the BJP to power in the state in 2016 and again voted for them in the last Lok Sabha elections just because it promised to protect the Assamese identity against the threat of illegal migrants. But the party has taken a U-turn and betrayed the people by welcoming the Hindu Bangladeshis through CAB. This Bill is communal, unconstitutional and against the interests of the Assamese people,” AASU advisor and senior leader Samujjal Kumar Bhattacharjya said here.

AASU, the biggest and the most influential students union, had led the Assam agitation against “illegal migrants” between 1979 and 1985 before signing the Assam accord with former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1985.

The accord promised to detect and deport all illegal migrants from Bangladesh with March 24, 1971 as the cut-off date.

“In their vision document, the BJP clearly mentioned that the Assam accord will be implemented in letter and spirit but now they have destroyed the accord by welcoming the post-1971 migrants through the CAB. We had accepted the illegal migrants who had settled between 1947 and 1971 and we will not accept anyone anymore, be it Hindu, Muslim or Christian. All post-1971 migrants must be detected through the National Register of Citizens (NRC), irrespective of their religion,” Bhattacharjya said.

The CAB, passed by both the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha, seeks to allow `religious persecuted’ non-Muslim migrants till December 2014 to apply for Indian citizenship.

The BJP tied up with regional outfits, the Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) and the Bodoland People’s Front (BPF), and formed its first government in Assam in 2016 after 15 years of Congress rule led by Tarun Gogoi. The BJP also won nine of the 14 Lok Sabha seats from the state this year.

“The BJP has passed the CAB to give citizenship to the Hindus just to protect their Hindu vote bank and stay in power for long. Just because they have the numbers now, they can’t force an anti-people Bill on us. People of Assam will never accept such a law”, Bhattacharjya added.

On Prime Minister Narendra Modi's promise that the BJP was committed to protecting the identity of indigenous Assamese by implementing Clause VI (which promised constitutional, legal and administrative safeguards to indigenous Assamese) of the Assam accord, Bhattacharjya said, "Clause VI was promised in 1985 for accepting migrants till 1971, not beyond that."
 

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