Festering wounds of CAA protests keep citizenship issue alive in Assam
(File image) Protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act or CAA

Shillong: The North East Students’ Organisation on Friday said it would observe December 11 as ‘Black Day’ across the region in protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act or CAA.

On December 11, 2019, Rajya Sabha approved the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, completing the legislative procedure for giving Indian citizenship to non-Muslim migrants from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh.

“December 11 will always be remembered as a ‘Black Day’ for the entire Northeast,” NESO chairman Samuel Jyrwa said here.

Members of the NESO, the umbrella organisation of the influential students’ bodies in the Northeastern states, will put up black flags and black banners in important places across the region, he said.

“This demonstration is to give a message to the Government of India that we are against this Citizenship (Amendment) Act 2019,” he added.

Urging the people of the region to unite against the “draconian law”, Jyra said it was yet another “political injustice” that the indigenous people of the Northeast have to face.

“Despite the relentless opposition of the indigenous peoples, the Government of India passed the bill in Parliament,” he said.

Violent protests rocked the region in December 2019 after the Bill was passed in Parliament. There are concerns in the region that granting citizenship to refugees will be detrimental to the indigenous communities.

The Act is yet to be rolled out due to the absence of rules. The government has cited the outbreak of the pandemic for not framing them so far.

The CAA seeks to provide Indian citizenship to Hindus, Jains, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists and Parsis entering India on or before December 31, 2014 from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan after five years of residence here.

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