An impassioned plea

Sunday, 01 November 2020



An impassioned plea

Swapnil Bharali | October 28, 2018 11:58 hrs

This is Volume 6 Issue 1 of G Plus that you are holding in your hands – a singular opportunity for me to thank each and every one of you, our readers, for allowing us to see this day when we have completed 5 years of publishing. Yes! And I thank you from the bottom f my heart.


I felt this is an apt opportunity to write a happy editorial. But circumstances and situations over the past week have been rather disturbing. The massively successful Assam Bandh has registered a protest that has made Assam stand out as a disturbing element in the political schemes of the current dispensation. This is because the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill 2016 seeks to rehabilitate persecuted minorities from not just one region in the nation’s proximity (Bangladesh in our case), but from six other regions that include Pakistan and Afghanistan. Given this perspective of things, it is a fair Bill for the nation especially when steered by a BJP government. And so, we have suddenly become the odd people out because we don’t want foreigners of any lineage and religion usurping our land.


This being the reality, I guess we can try and be a bit practical. That the Bill will be passed and made a law by the Parliament is a foregone conclusion. No amount of Assamese agitation by way of bandhs et al can stop this because the Bill is “in the interest of the nation.” However, what we can do is urge for and then ensure some amendments to the current shape of the Bill whereby Assam, or the entire northeast for that matter, does not come under its purview. Given our history of having already absorbed the huge number of immigrants in our state, it would be entirely justified to demand this bit of tweak in the Bill.


And so, this piece is a practical and impassioned plea - a request to all political parties, the Joint Parliamentary Committee and all who have the power to convince the Government of India that the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill 2016 contains such sections whereby Assam’s special case is taken into consideration. This way, the massive NRC would not become an exercise in futility and the historic Assam Accord will be forever respected.

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