We Want To Free Assam From Infiltrators: Modi On Assam NRC

PM Narendra Modi is seen waving to the people along with Assam CM Sarbananda Sonowal and Assam Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma at Changsari on February 9th, 2019. Photo courtesy: Sarma's Twitter handle
PM Narendra Modi is seen waving to the people along with Assam CM Sarbananda Sonowal and Assam Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma at Changsari on February 9th, 2019. Photo courtesy: Sarma's Twitter handle

Guwahati, February 9, 2019

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on February 9th, 2019 said that his government wants to free the country from the infiltrators and hence the updation work of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) has been initiated under the supervision of the Supreme Court.

“We want to free the country from the infiltrators. It reflects in our stringent actions against them. We implemented the NRC under the supervision of the Supreme Court as the earlier governments were hesitating to do,” Modi said while addressing a gathering in Changsari in Kamrup on February 9th, 2019.

He added, “We have to strengthen the voice of the people in order to get rid of infiltrators in Assam and country. That is why we did chitmahal agreement and are working towards completely sealing India-Bangladesh border.”

The India–Bangladesh enclaves, also known as the chitmahals and sometimes called pasha enclaves, were the enclaves along the Bangladesh–India border, in Bangladesh and the Indian states of West Bengal, Tripura, Assam and Meghalaya.

Modi also said that a committee to implement Clause 6 of the historic 1985 Assam Accord. “Even after 36 years, the Assam accord has not been implemented yet and only Modi-led government would fulfil this. Our government has formed a committee for the implementation of Clause 6 of the Assam Accord. Stop playing the emotions of Assam people for political gain and vote bank,” he said.

Earlier, Assam Governor Jagdish Mukhi on January 26th, 2019 said that the Clause 6 is the soul of the historic 1985 Assam Accord and there is no place for illegal foreigners in Assam.

Hoisting the national flag on the occasion of 70th Republic Day at the Veterinary Field, Khanapara, Guwahati, Mukhi said, “The Clause 6 is the soul of the pact. The political rights of Assam’s indigenous people will be protected at any cost.”

People at PM Modi's programme at Changsari. Kamrup
People at PM Modi’s programme at Changsari. Kamrup. Photo courtesy: Himanta Biswa Sarma’s Twitter handle

Modi further said that the previous governments betrayed the minority communities. “I will fight against them. Assam will have to be saved. Since partition, the minority communities were betrayed. It is the responsibility of India to give them shelter. I assure the people of Northeast that your state will not be harmed through Citizenship (Amendment) Bill.”

He also hit out at Congress over Bharat Ratna row. He said that singer-composer Bhupen Hazarika could have been alive to receive the award but it did not happen in the grand old party’s regime as such honours were “reserved for some people at the time of their birth”.

Clause 6 of Assam Accord

The Assam Accord was a Memorandum of Settlement signed between representatives of the Government of India and the leaders of the Assam Movement in New Delhi on August 15, 1985 in presence of Rajiv Gandhi, the then Prime Minister. A six-year agitation demanding identification and deportation of illegal immigrants was launched by the All Assam Students’ Union in 1979.

The Clause 6 of the Accord states that appropriate constitutional, legislative and administrative safeguards shall be provided to “protect, preserve and promote the cultural, social, linguistic identity and heritage of the Assamese people.”

Supreme Court raps Centre

The Supreme Court on February 5th, 2019 pulled up the Centre over the National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Assam. The top court said that the Union Home Ministry comes up with “different stories to destroy the process”.

The apex court said that the deadline will not be extended beyond July 31st, 2019 as elections and the NRC must go together. “We are getting an impression that the MHA wants to destroy the whole process. Every time the MHA comes up with different stories to destroy this process,” said Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi.

PM Modi said that the previous governments betrayed the minority communities. Photo courtesy: Himanta Biswa Sarma's Twitter handle
PM Modi said that the previous governments betrayed the minority communities. Photo courtesy: Himanta Biswa Sarma’s Twitter handle

The Assam government released the second and final draft of NRC on July 30th , 2018. 2,89, 83,677 persons were found eligible out of 3,29,91,384 applicants in the final draft of the NRC. Of these, 37,59,630 names have been rejected and the remaining 2,48,077 are on hold. The first draft was released on December 31st  (midnight), 2017.