The All Assam Students’ Union activists gathered outside the home of Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal on December 2nd, 2019 to protest against the controversial Citizenship (Amendment) Bill. Sonowal was present in his house at the time of protest.
The AASU activists “gheraoed” the Chief Minister’s residence in Lakhinagar and shouted slogans against the Bharatiya Janata Party-led central government and demanded to scrap the Bill. As the protest intensified, Sonowal had to “escape” to Jorhat by taking a chopper, as per information available.
“We will not accept the bill as it violates the secular character of the Constitution and the Assam Accord,” AASU activists said.
Massive protests broke out across the state against the Bill that sought to relax the eligibility to get Indian citizenship for six religious communities from four neighbouring countries.
The Bill seeks to grant Indian citizenship to the people belonging to the Hindus, Jains, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists, and Parsis who have become the victims of religious persecution in Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan and entered India on or before December 31st, 2014.
The Centre will attempt to pass the Bill during the ongoing Winter Session of the Parliament by December 10th, 2019.
On December 1st, 2019, the students of the Dibrugarh University (DU) ‘banned’ the entry of Sonowal for his alleged silence on it. The varsity is Sonowal’s alma mater. He did his Bachelor of English Honours from the DU.
The DU Post Graduate Students’ Union said, “It is a matter of shame that Sonowal being a student of DU is supporting the Bill. We will address him as Jatiya Khalnayak and not as Jatiya Nayak (national hero).”
Photo credit: Outlook India (L) and @abdulrajjak (R)