SHILLONG, Feb 22: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) – led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government at the Centre has been accused of using the Assam Rifles to suppress any opposition to its intention to bring back the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) after the ensuing Lok Sabha polls.
With the Ministry of Home Affairs issuing a notification wherein the Centre has given sweeping powers to the Assam Rifles to arrest anyone, search any place without any warrant in the states of Assam, Nagaland, Mizoram, Arunachal Pradesh and Manipur, the North East Students’ Organization (NESO) has interpreted this as a move towards this goal.
In a statement issued here on Friday, NESO chairman Samuel B Jyrwa condemned what he termed as an ‘unwarranted action’ on the part of the Centre and said, “This can be termed as state-sponsored oppression which further proof of the attitude that the BJP-led Central government has towards the indigenous people of the North East.”
Jyrwa also expressed NESO’s cynicism over this move by the Central government and questioned whether it is in any way connected to its inability to table the CAB in the just concluded session of the Rajya Sabha due to the people’s movement.
He also questioned if this has been done ‘to put in place the Assam Rifles personnel to oppress any people’s movement in the near future if the BJP brings back the CAB after the Lok Sabha elections’.
Jyrwa further stated that it seems that the Centre is never satisfied to subject the indigenous peoples of the North East to untold misery and suffering through AFSPA which has been in imposition for decades but more and more draconian measures are being imposed just like this notification of the Ministry of Home Affairs.
“This unprovoked move by the Centre can be termed as downright tyranny on the indigenous peoples of the North East and NESO calls upon all the indigenous peoples to be united, alert and to rise to the occasion in the event of any eventuality,” he said.