PM Modi – Shinzo Abe Guwahati summit on Dec 15-16 on track: MEA

Narendra Modi Shinzo Abe
Prime Minister Narendra Modi meets his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe in Russia. (Twitter/@narendramodi)

Raveesh Kumar, MEA on reports that PM Modi and Japan PM Shinzo Abe summit (December 15-16) to be shifted out of Guwahati and Imphal: We have no update to share right now.

The turmoil in Assam comes days ahead of a summit Modi plans to host for Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe there as part of his campaign to move high-profile diplomatic events outside of Delhi to showcase India’s diversity.

Modi urged calm and said the people of Assam had nothing to fear. “I want to assure them – no one can take away your rights, unique identity and beautiful culture. It will continue to flourish and grow,” he tweeted.

More troops have been deployed to Assam to restore peace and mobile internet was suspended in 10 districts, the government said.

The new law is also raising concerns that Modi’s government is pushing a Hindu-first identity for India and fanning fears for the future of Muslims, the biggest minority group.

The Indian Express said the law, which requires presidential assent, unfairly targets India’s 170 million Muslims.

“It is a political signal of a terrible narrowing, a chilling exclusion, directed at India’s own largest minority. India is to be redefined as the natural home of Hindus, it says to India’s Muslims. And that they must, therefore, be content with a less natural citizenship.”

The government has said the new law will be followed by a citizenship register that means Muslims must prove they were original residents of India and not refugees from these three countries, potentially rendering some of them stateless.

Members of other faiths listed in the law, by contrast, have a clear path to citizenship.

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