SHILLONG, May 09: Meghalaya should be exempted from the purview of the Citizen Amendment Bill 2016, according to the Khasi Students’ Union (KSU) which has been very vocal about its opposition to this bill.
“Our stand is clear, the bill should not be implemented or the state should be exempted from the purview of the bill as we have understood that Banglaseshi Hindus or of any other religion comes to our sate in huge numbers, we will be reduced to a minority,” KSU General Secretary Donald Thabah said here on Wednesday while further adding that the KSU is grateful to the state government under the leadership of Conrad K Sangma for understanding the sentiments of the people and opposing this bill.
Pointing out that when the central government proposed the bill not just the KSU but all the students union of the north east opposed it, Donald said, “We will be meeting the delegation of the joint parliamentary committee on this and in our representation, we have explicitly mentioned that we are totally against this bill because such a bill will greatly affect the demography of the entire NE region and there are possibilities that not only the Khasis, the indigenous communities of the region will become minorities in their own land “.
“We have seen what happened to Assam,” Donald added.
Condemning the recent statement made by the Minister of State (MoS) for Railways, Rajan Gohain who had stated that the bill would not affect the indigenous communities of Assam, Donald said, “He should realize that the indigenous communities of Assam are being reduced to minorities whereby in a span of two decades in about 12 districts of Assam the indigenous communities have become minorities”.
Donald also said that Gohain may not be thinking about the indigenous communities as was in the case of introducing railways that Meghalaya experienced.
“Through his office they were trying to forcibly introduce railway to our state even though the state government was opposed to it, the district council was not issuing the NOC and yet we had to hit the streets to oppose it,” said Donald
“This bill is religious bias and we are against this,” he said.