GUWAHATI, April 5 - The Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) on the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 will resume hearings in New Delhi on April 12 but all the organizations who are strongly opposing the Bill have not been called for the hearing. The JPC has also asked the organisations called for the hearings to submit their memorandum well in advance along with the names of the representatives who would be attending the hearing.
Though a large number of organizations have been opposing the Bill, which aims to provide citizenship to Hindu Bangladeshis who came to India after March 25, 1971 due to religious persecution in their own country, only a few of the organizations have been called for the hearing. The All Assam Students� Union (AASU) and 26 other organizations representing different ethnic groups of the State, had given a joint memorandum to the JPC but only a few of the organizations have been called for the hearing. However, the AASU was called for hearing long back and the organisation strongly opposed the Bill saying that it would violate the provisions of the Assam Accord and pose a threat to the identity of the indigenous people of the State.
It may be mentioned here that the AASU had submitted a detailed memorandum to the JPC opposing the Bill and said that it would destroy the valued principle of secularism enshrined in the Constitution of India. The Bill has a hidden agenda of creating vote bank at the cost of the secular fabric of the country and the Bill would encourage further infiltration from Bangladesh, the memorandum said.
The memorandum further said that Assam would not be able to take any more burden of Bangladeshi nationals irrespective of their religion as the State has already accepted the burden of the foreigners who came to the State up to the midnight of March 24, 1971 and all sections of indigenous people of the State are opposed to granting citizenship to foreigners who came to the State on or after March 25, 1971.
Meanwhile, AASU chief adviser Samujjal Bhattacharya has warned that the Central and State Governments should be ready to face a vigorous movement if they try to pass the Bill forcefully by not accepting the opinion of the people of the State. He said that the JPC should take the opinion of all the indigenous people of the State before formulating its opinion and if the Centre tries to impose the Bill against the wishes of the people, it would be responsible for the consequences.
Bhattacharya further said, �now the Government of India has cordial relation with Bangladesh. If Hindus are facing religious persecution in Bangladesh, the matter should be taken up with the Government of Bangladesh to ensure their security. If the Government of India can not do this, it will prove that the Centre does not have proper external affairs policy.�