Friday, Jan 21, 2022 | Last Update : 11:35 PM IST

  India   Politics  30 Jan 2019  NDA parties in N-E oppose citizens’ bill

NDA parties in N-E oppose citizens’ bill

THE ASIAN AGE. | MANOJ ANAND
Published : Jan 30, 2019, 1:36 am IST
Updated : Jan 30, 2019, 1:36 am IST

It is significant that the Northeast states account for 25 Lok Sabha seats and the BJP was hoping to grab 20 of them through the NEDA route.

Conrad Sangma
 Conrad Sangma

Guwahati: In what will put more pressure on the Centre to scrap the controversial Citizenship (Amend-ment) Bill 2016, 10 political parties from the Northeast and the Janata Dal (United) decided here Tuesday to intensify their efforts to block the controversial legislation.

The political parties, several belonging to the BJP-led North-East Democratic Alliance (NEDA), resolved to oppose the bill in the larger interest of the people of the Northeast.

 

While the meeting called by Meghalaya chief minister Conrad Sangma was attended by representatives and leaders of 11 political parties, prominent among them was the Asom Gana Parishad, National Peoples Party, Indigenous Peoples Front of Tripura, Naga Peoples Front, Mizo National Front and Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party.

Clarifying that they have come together not for any political purpose but only to oppose the Citizenship Bill, Meghalaya CM Conrad Sangma, who is also the president of NPP, told reporters: “This meeting is the outcome of a natural process as we felt we
must come together and oppose the bill with one voice.”

 

He said: “The meeting resolved to meet the President and Prime Minister and appeal to them to withdraw the bill, which has turned into a sentimental issue for the entire Northeast.”

Mizoram CM and MNF chief Zoramthanga, who also attended the mmeting, said: “We took a strong resolution to condemn and totally oppose the bill intended to be passed by the Central government. The bill is dangerous and harmful for the people of the Northeast.”

In a related development on Monday, JD(U) general secretary K.C. Tyagi, who was here to attend a meeting with the AGP, announced that his party would not only oppose the bill but also meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi and senior BJP leaders to persuade them to scrap the controversial legislation. He said his party will vote against the bill if it is brought to the Rajya Sabha.

 

The controversial bill, that seeks to grant citizenship to non-Muslims from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan, has led to fears in the Northeast about an influx of illegal immigrants into the region.

Asserting that it was not any realignment of regional political parties in the wake of the Lok Sabha polls, AGP president Atul Bora said: “We have been opposing the bills separately in our respective states. Now we have come together for a common cause.”

The bill has already been passed in the Lok Sabha and is expected to come up for voting in the Rajya Sabha in the Budget Session which begins from January 31.

It is significant that the Northeast states account for 25 Lok Sabha seats and the BJP was hoping to grab 20 of them through the NEDA route.

 

The 10 parties which participated in the meeting were Mizo National Front (MNF), United Democratic Party (UDP), Asom Gana Parishad (AGP), Naga Peoples’ Front (NPF), National Peoples’ Party (NPP), National Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP), Hill State Peoples Democratic Party (HSPDP), Peoples Democratic Front (PDF), Indigenous Peoples Front of Tripura (IPFT) and the Khnam.

Tags: citizenship (amendment) bill, conrad sangma