Guwahati: Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal said on Friday that the government would come out with a draft soon. It clear the air around citizenship and give details about the exact number of foreigners who would get citizenship under the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA).
He said that the number of foreigners who would get citizenship is very less. Only those who have faced religious persecution and are already staying in Assam get Indian citizenship.
The draft, being seen as an attempt on the part of the government to clear the confusions around CAA and citizenship issues and allay fears in the minds of the people of Assam, would also elaborate on the process to be followed to apply for citizenship.
Sonowal was addressing the media for the first time on Friday after the violent protests that rocked Guwahati and Assam post the passage of the Citizenship Act in Rajya Sabha on December 11. According to Assam DGP, Bhaskar Jyoti Mahanta, four people lost their lives due to police firing and 27 were left injured during the protests.
Trying to soothe the frayed nerves of the people of Assam, the chief minister further assured that his government is working hard to protect and preserve the language, culture and land of Assam.
“Assamese language would not be harmed, it would be considered as an official language. Our land, language and culture will be protected forever. People are spreading rumours by saying that land of farmers would be handed over to foreigners. People are being mislead about the number of foreigners who would get citizenship and also about the influx numbers”, Sonowal said.
“We respect the demands put forth by the protesters and the several bodies protesting against CAA. There are some third party which are trying to spread fake news, create violence in the sidelines of the democratic protests,” Sonowal added.
He appealed to all protesters to consider him and his cabinet colleagues as one among them and invited the protesters to discuss any issue that they might have with him and his ministers. “I appeal to people to come and discuss with us all their concerns so that we can move ahead with positive approach. I am with the people of Assam. Because of them I was elected as the CM. We have invited all stakeholders for a conclusive discussion”.
He also tried to reach out to the minority community of the state and asked them not to be worried, no harm would be caused to them.
The chief minister said that the situation across Assam is improving and thanked the people for maintaining peace and tranquility.
The government has set up a Special Investigative Team (SIT) to investigate the recent violence, he said.