Meghalaya CM, NESO against Citizenship Amendment Bill

The Bill is expected to be passed in the ongoing winter session.
Conrad Sangma
Meghalaya CM Conrad Sangma

New Delhi, Nov 30 : The Meghalaya government along with various political parties and members of civil society groups here on Saturday submitted joint resolution to Home Minister Amit Shah opposing the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) in the state.

Chief Minister Conrad Sangma submitted the letter to Shah during the consultative meeting with leaders of political parties, students bodies and civil society groups of Meghalaya on the Bill, opposed by cross-sections of the society in the Northeastern region.

The bill seeks to remove hurdles in the way of eligible migrants from six minority groups from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan from getting Indian citizenship.

The BJP-led NDA government had introduced the Bill in its previous tenure but could not push it through due to protests by opposition and it lapsed following the dissolution of the last Lok Sabha.

The Bill is expected to be passed in the ongoing winter session.

In a letter to Shah, Sangma said representatives of the state government, political parties, autonomous district council, civil society groups, met here on Friday and Saturday and resolved to oppose the CAB.

The letter, signed by Sangma, Assembly Speaker Metbah Lyngdoh, Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong, Agriculture Minister Banteidor Lyngdoh, the Khasi Student’s Union, the Hynniewtrep National Youth Front, among others, also urged the Home Minister to accept the resolution in the interest of the people of Meghalaya.

Meanwhile, the North East Student’s Organisation (NESO), led by chairman Samuel Jyrwa, said the NESO had voiced strong opposition to the proposed Bill.

“We oppose the objective of the Bill and it should not be adopted by Parliament under any circumstances. The Bill is again an attempt to impose the burden of the post-1971 Hindu Bangladeshis in the Northeast region, which is not justified to say the least and Northeast is not a dumping ground for illegal Bangladeshis and to us a foreigner is a foreigner irrespective of his religion,” Jyrwa said.

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