Citizenship (Amendment) Bill not for Mizoram, Shah tells Rajya Sabha
Home minister Amit Shah moved the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill in the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday with the Opposition also moving a resolution to send the controversial bill to a select committee.
Shah said the bill would not apply to Mizoram. India, he iterated, could not give citizenship to Muslim migrants from world over. “The bill is only aimed at minorities from three nations facing persecution,” the minister told the House amid reports that fresh protests had broken out in Assam.
He said non-Muslim minorities from three nations who came to India after Independence would be given Indian citizenship.
People out on streets
A day after the total shutdown in Assam to protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, fresh protests erupted in the state on Wednesday, forcing police to fire rubber bullets and resort to lathicharge in Dibrugarh district.
Police said a journalist was injured in stone pelting by a mob and that policemen lobbed tear gas shells to disperse a crowd near a polytechnic institute in Dibrugarh town.
Although no organisation has called for a bandh on Wednesday, people came out in large numbers in Jorhat, Golaghat, Dibrugarh, Tinsukia, Sivasagar, Bongaigaon, Nagaon, Sonitpur and several other districts since morning.
Tyres were burnt and logs placed on the roads and rail tracks to stop movement of vehicles and trains across the state, officials said.
Police resorted to lathicharge to disperse protesters to clear the roads and rail tracks near Chaulkhowa in Dibrugarh. Rubber bullets were fired and lathicharge was carried out against agitators at Moran in the district, police said.
14 trains cancelled, rescheduled
The Northeast Frontier Railway cancelled several trains and rescheduled a few on Wednesday in view of the protests.
At least 14 trains were either cancelled, short terminated or diverted anticipating “disruptions in train movement,” NF railway CPRO Subhanan Chanda said in a statement. Out of these, eight trains had been “completely” cancelled, while the journeys of the rest had been truncated.
The Avadh Assam Express is rescheduled to originate from New Tinsukia and will remain cancelled between Dibrugarh and New Tinsukia.
The Ledo-Guwahati Intercity Express, Dibrugarh-Furketing Guwahati Intercity Express, Naharlagun-Tinsukia Intercity Express and Dekargaon-Dibrugarh Intercity Express have been cancelled.
On Tuesday, normal life across Assam came to a standstill due to an 11-hour northeast bandh called by the North East Students' Organisation (NESO), an umbrella body of all student outfits of the northeast, and a 12-hour Assam bandh by Left organisations.