Mizoram civil society orgns to meet Shah on CAB


Aizawl: A conglomerate of civil society organisations and student bodies of Mizoram on Friday said its leaders would meet Union Home Minister Amit Shah here on Saturday, changing its decision to hold a protest rally on the issue.

Shah comes to Aizawl on Saturday on a day’s visit during which he will inaugurate an exhibition of northeast handloom and handicraft products and meet state leaders.

“We will submit a memorandum and discuss with him our displeasure over the Centre’s proposal to amend the Citizenship Act, 1955,” a leader of the NGO Coordination Committee said, adding that they had withdrawn the earlier plan to hold a protest rally.

The Committee has changed its decision after Chief Minister Zoramthanga urged them not to protest during the first visit of Shah, also BJP national president, to the state after becoming the Union home minister, he said.

Zoramthanga is the president of ruling Mizo National Front which is a constituent of the NDA and the North East Democratic Alliance (NEDA), both headed by the BJP.

BJP’s Mizoram unit president John V Hluna had also appealed to the civil society organisations of the state not to hold any protest programme during Shah’s visit.

BJP sources said the Shah would first inaugurate the Northeast Handloom and Handicraft Exhibition and hold a meeting with the chief minister and senior government officials.

Besides, the Union minister will also hold a one-on- one meeting with Zoramthanga and then talk to the NGO Coordination Committee leaders on the issue of Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB).

Three days ago, Amit Shah had announced that the CAB would be brought in Parliament again.

It had been passed by the Lok Sabha on January 8, 2019, but could not be placed in Rajya Sabha.

The legislation seeks to facilitate the granting of citizenship to Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Christians, and Parsis from Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh and entering India before December 31, 2014.

The move by the BJP-led NDA government to amend the Citizenship Act stirred a hornet’s nest in the Northeast and protests were held in several states on Thursday. The indigenous people of the region were scared that if the CAB is enacted, it would endanger their identity and livelihood. (PTI)