Life in the north-eastern state of Nagaland has come to a standstill on Monday following a dawn-to-dusk shutdown called in protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016.
The shutdown has evoked a total response, say reports, with shops, business establishments, markets, public places, and educational institutions being closed. Vehicular traffic has been suspended in all the 11 districts.
The otherwise busy roads in the state capital Kohima and the commercial town of Dimapur wore a deserted look despite the Nagaland government’s appeal to “reconsider” the shutdown while the opposition, Naga People’s Front, has backed the shutdown.
“There is no report of any untoward incident from any part of the state. The shutdown has brought life to a standstill,” a police official said.
The coordination committee of tribal hohos (associations), civil society organisations, various committees and mass-based organizations, under the aegis of the Nagaland Gaon Burhas Federation (NGBF), said that the strike has been called to protest the planned passage of the Bill in the Rajya Sabha.
Nagaland Chief Secretary and Finance Commissioner Temjen Toy said the state government will propose the adoption of a resolution to oppose the Bill in the forthcoming budget session scheduled to be held on February 21 as decided during the January 31 consultative meeting held in Dimapur.
The Nagaland cabinet has rejected the Bill which was passed in the Lok Sabha on January 8.
Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio has said that the state government, which represents the will and desire of the people, remains opposed to the Bill that seeks to make it convenient for eligible migrants from six minority groups from Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Afghanistan in getting Indian citizenship.
Rio also promised that his government would leave no stone unturned to constantly protect the rights and privileges of the people of the state.
(With agency inputs)