Mizoram seeks 'special clause' to check effects of CAB

Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga (PTI Photo)

Mizoram government on Saturday urged Home Minister Amit Shah to insert a "special clause" in the Citizenship (Amendment) bill (CAB) to check possible adverse impact on the state's indigenous communities.

Chief Minister Zoramthanga submitted the proposal to Shah during the latter's visit to the state while several local organisations demanded that Mizoram and the rest of the Northeast be exempted from the bill's ambit.

Members belonging to two small political parties held placards during Shah's visit and demanded that the state be exempted from the purview of the bill. They called the bill "suicidal for the Northeast's indigenous communities."

After his meeting with Shah at Aizawl, Zoramthanga said that the special clause could add more teeth to the Inner Line Permit system, which is in place in the state. He, however, did not elaborate the special provision.

Indigenous communities in the Northeast including Mizoram are against the Centre's move to re-introduce the Citizenship (Amendment) bill that seeks to allow non-Muslim migrants, who fled Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan till December 31, 2014 due to religious persecution. Ethnic communities in the Northeast fears that citizenship to a "large number of illegal migrants" will reduce them into minorities.

The influential NGO Co-ordination Committee, an umbrella body of NGOs and other civil society organisations, also met Shah in which it conveyed its reservations over the bill and the concerns among the ethnic communities.

The committee had earlier wanted to stage a protest during Shah's visit but withdrew the plan following assurance about their meeting with the home minister.

Chief ministers of Mizoram, Meghalaya and Nagaland had requested Shah on September 9 to exempt the Northeast from the ambit of the bill. Shah told the chief ministers of the Northeast in Guwahati that Centre would go ahead with the bill without affecting the existing protection mechanism for the region's ethnic communities.

Earlier, after inaugurating the Northeast Handloon Expo at Aizawl, Shah said that the BJP-led government had taken several schemes to further boost development in Mizoram.

Shah said that Aizawl was likely to be connected with broad gauge railway lines by 2021.

DH Newsletter Privacy Policy Get top news in your inbox daily
GET IT
Comments (+)