Assam has been witnessing massive protests, both during the day and night against the controversial Citizenship (Amendment) Bill or CAB. Large numbers of students, common citizens, civil society, political groups, artists, writers have hit the streets since the Union Cabinet cleared the Bill on December 4th, 2019.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah will table the Bill in the Lok Sabha on December 9th, 2019. In wake of statewide protest against the Bill, an effigy of Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal with a ‘suicide note’ was found hanging in Lakhimpur on December 9th, 2019. Similar effigies were spotted in several areas of Lakhimpur.
The ‘suicide note’ found with the hanged effigy read, “I am Sarbananda. I an anti-national. I backstabbed my motherland. I am committing suicide for selling my community and land.”
On Monday afternoon, Shah will introduce the Bill to amend the six-decade-old Citizenship Act, 1955 and later in the day, it will be taken up for discussion and passage, according to the Lok Sabha’s list of business for December 9th, 2019.
The bill seeks to grant Indian citizenship to non-Muslim refugees from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan escaping religious persecution there. It proposes to make the people from Hindu, Sikh, Jain, Buddhist, Christian and Parsi faiths who entered India on or before December 31st, 2014, eligible for Indian citizenship.
The agitators said that the Bill will nullify the provisions of the 1985 Assam Accord, which fixed March 24th, 1971, as the cut-off date for deportation of all illegal immigrants irrespective of religion.