Post-NRC, jittery states step up vigil
Perturbed over the exclusion of more than 19 lakh people in the final National Register of Citizens in Assam, the Naga Students Federation (NSF) on Monday expressed apprehension of mass infiltration into Nagaland.
Officials in Mizoram have expressed similar sentiments.
The NSF expressed deep anguish at the Nagaland government for its inaction in implementing the inner-line permit (ILP) regime in Dimapur and for allowing the district to flourish as a haven of illegal migrants in the state.
Federation president Ninoto Awomi and general secretary Liremo Kikon said in a release that influx of non-locals and illegal immigrants to Nagaland is expected to sharply increase in the coming days.
It reiterated that the poorly-enforced ILP regime in Nagaland and the impending exodus of illegal immigrants from the neighbouring states is posing as the biggest demographic threat to the indigenous inhabitants of the state.
The federation said lack of stringent implementation of the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation (BEFR) 1873 and the exclusion of Dimapur district from the purview of ILP have made Dimapur district a safe haven for the illegal immigrants. It added there is an imminent threat to the Naga indigenous inhabitants being outnumbered by the illegal immigrant populace via Dimapur district.
The federation said it is of paramount importance for the state government to immediately implement the ILP regime in Dimapur district as passed in the Assembly budget session on February 21 and as endorsed in the Abhijit Singh ILP Committee recommendation.
The Central Nagaland Tribes Council has expressed apprehension about arrival of these excluded people in the state. The council urged the state government to take preventive measures immediately because those immigrants, who did not made it to the final NRC list, would try to infiltrate into Nagaland and get a foothold.
It also asked all gaonburahs (village chiefs) and chairmen of village and colony councils to remain alert so that these illegal immigrants did not stay in their respective localities, especially in the foothill areas along the Assam-Nagaland border.
In Aizawl, police sources said security has been beefed up in the state and police stations and border outposts along the Mizoram-Assam border have been alerted after the publication of the NRC in the neighbouring state.
The Mizoram government has also asked its officials not to issue temporary inner line permits to those people whose names did not figure in the citizen list, an official said. He said the measure was taken in order to avoid infiltration.
An official source said Mamit district deputy commissioner Lalrozama on Monday convened a meeting with officials, security personnel and leaders of NGOs and village councils to discuss security preparedness in view of the NRC publication.
The meeting decided to beef up security checkgates in Mamit district to prevent illegal migrants from entering Mizoram, the sources said.
Lalrozama has sought support and cooperation from all stakeholders, the sources added. The meeting also agreed to install CCTV on border checkpost at Kanhmun, which is the entry point to the district to prevent influx.
The three Mizoram districts of Kolasib, Aizawl and Mamit share about 123km long border with south Assam’s Cachar, Hailakandi and Karimganj districts.