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JPC visit to Assam put off indefinitely

By KALYAN BAROOAH

NEW DELHI, Oct 31 - The visit to Assam by the Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) on Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 has been postponed indefinitely.

According to sources, the 30-member JPC was intimated by the Parliament Secretariat on behalf of JPC chairman Satyapal Singh that the panel�s visit to Guwahati scheduled on November 2 and 3 has been postponed. Accordingly, the MPs in the JPC were informed about the postponement by SMS.

Sources said when the JPC members contacted the Secretariat, they were informally told that the meeting was postponed because of logistic problems. Given the short period of time, the Parliament Secretariat could not make arrangements for the visit by the 30 members and support staff.

A fresh decision would be taken on the timing of the visit by the chairman soon, the MPs were told.

Meanwhile, sources also confided that the chairman is unlikely to visit Silchar as requested by Congress MP Sushmita Dev and instead, a small team of MPs may be assigned to visit the Cachar district headquarters.

The Silchar MP had written to the JPC chairman requesting that Silchar should be included in the tour itinerary to ensure that the panel gets a fair picture of the ground situation.

The visit was crucial given that Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal had personally met the JPC chairman and requested him to tour the State to make a first-hand assessment of the ground situation.

The Assam BJP on October 25 had said that the JPC should specifically examine whether the provisions of the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 clash with the Assam Accord. Assam Transport and Industry Minister Chandra Mohan Patowary explained that the State BJP was perturbed over the developments in the State relating to the Bengali Hindu migrants.

Sonowal had requested Singh to tour Assam along with his JPC members to hold discussions with the stakeholders. He also explained to the chairman the State people�s sentiments attached with the issue.

The JPC chairman accepted the Chief Minister�s proposal and Patowary announced that the Parliamentary panel will travel to Assam. Last week, at least 12 organisations made submissions before the JPC and these included the All Assam Students� Union, Asom Gana Parishad, Assam Andolan Sangrami Mancha, Barak Valley Bangla Sahitya Sanmilan and Joint Action Bengali Committee, besides a few others from Tripura and West Bengal.

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JPC visit to Assam put off indefinitely

NEW DELHI, Oct 31 - The visit to Assam by the Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) on Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 has been postponed indefinitely.

According to sources, the 30-member JPC was intimated by the Parliament Secretariat on behalf of JPC chairman Satyapal Singh that the panel�s visit to Guwahati scheduled on November 2 and 3 has been postponed. Accordingly, the MPs in the JPC were informed about the postponement by SMS.

Sources said when the JPC members contacted the Secretariat, they were informally told that the meeting was postponed because of logistic problems. Given the short period of time, the Parliament Secretariat could not make arrangements for the visit by the 30 members and support staff.

A fresh decision would be taken on the timing of the visit by the chairman soon, the MPs were told.

Meanwhile, sources also confided that the chairman is unlikely to visit Silchar as requested by Congress MP Sushmita Dev and instead, a small team of MPs may be assigned to visit the Cachar district headquarters.

The Silchar MP had written to the JPC chairman requesting that Silchar should be included in the tour itinerary to ensure that the panel gets a fair picture of the ground situation.

The visit was crucial given that Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal had personally met the JPC chairman and requested him to tour the State to make a first-hand assessment of the ground situation.

The Assam BJP on October 25 had said that the JPC should specifically examine whether the provisions of the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 clash with the Assam Accord. Assam Transport and Industry Minister Chandra Mohan Patowary explained that the State BJP was perturbed over the developments in the State relating to the Bengali Hindu migrants.

Sonowal had requested Singh to tour Assam along with his JPC members to hold discussions with the stakeholders. He also explained to the chairman the State people�s sentiments attached with the issue.

The JPC chairman accepted the Chief Minister�s proposal and Patowary announced that the Parliamentary panel will travel to Assam. Last week, at least 12 organisations made submissions before the JPC and these included the All Assam Students� Union, Asom Gana Parishad, Assam Andolan Sangrami Mancha, Barak Valley Bangla Sahitya Sanmilan and Joint Action Bengali Committee, besides a few others from Tripura and West Bengal.