The All Assam Students Union (AASU), which is spearheading the anti-Citizenship Amendment Act protests, on Friday called a three-day mass satyagraha in all district headquarters of the state from December 16 whereas the Naga Students’ Federation (NSF) has called a 6-hour bandh today, starting 6 am to protest against the amended Citizenship Act.
The NSF statement read, “The bandh has been called to express the resentment of the Naga people against the passing of the contentious CAB in the Parliament, much against the interests and the sentiments of the Indigenous people in the North East states.”
The NSF directed all its federating units and subordinate bodies in Manipur, Assam and Nagaland to take up all necessary measures to ensure that the total bandh is carried out successfully in their respective jurisdictions.
Announcing the fresh agitation programme from December 16, AASU Chief Adviser Samujjal Bhattacharya coined the slogan “Repeal Citizenship Amendment Act or arrest me”.
Bhattacharya said padyatra and protest meetings would be organised across the state and posters would put up against the controversial law.
“Everybody will join the movement. Women will blow the conchshell demanding the withdrawal of the Act,” he said.
Meanwhile, authorities have rolled out measures to help out the hundreds of passengers stranded at the airport, railways stations and inter-state bus terminals due to the protests which have led to suspension of flight, train and public road transport services.
Buses would ferry the stranded passengers to various parts of the city, an official said.
NSF said students appearing for examination, healthcare professionals on duty, media personnel and marriage parties, provided the wedding card is produced, will be exempted from the proposed total bandh.
President Ram Nath Kovind, in a late Thursday night order, gave his assent to The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019, letting it become an Act allowing Indian citizenship to six non-Muslim minority migrants facing religious persecution in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan.
According to the Act, members of Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi and Christian communities, who have come from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan, till December 31, 2014, facing religious persecution there, will not be treated as illegal immigrants but given Indian citizenship.
The passing of the Citizenship Bill in the Parliament has plunged the northeast, especially the states of Assam, Tripura and Meghalaya into deep chaos with locals and students hitting the streets in thousands in protest.
The indigenous people of the northeastern states are worried that the entry of these people will endanger their identity and livelihood.