Bandh success proves CAB cannot divide region: NESO

GUWAHATI: North East Students Organisation (NESO) adviser, Samujjal Bhattacharjya has thanked all the affiliated students’ organisations in the region for making the North East bandh against CAB “a success”, asserting that it only proved that the states of the region, despite political boundaries, were united in regard to protection of indigenous interests.

Addressing anti-CAB protesters, also comprising members of the Silpi Samaj, at Swahid Nyash Bhawan here on Tuesday afternoon, Bhattacharjya said that leaders of the Khasi Students Union, Garo Students Union, Mizo Zirlai Pawl and All Arunachal Pradesh Students Union have informed that the bandh has been “total” in their respective states.

“Representatives of the Naga Students Federation have informed us about staging a protest demonstration in the state as the Hornbill Festival, which is an indigenous festival, is currently under way. The Tripura Students Federation too has informed us about a total bandh in the areas inhabited by indigenous groups, while urging Assam to be wary of the threat posed by CAB so that it does not become a ‘second Tripura’,” he said.

The NESO leader said the seven states of the Northeast have, by this unity show, proved that the “politics of divide and rule” could not be applied in the region.

“Delhi thought it could pacify people in the Northeast by exempting ILP states and the Sixth Schedule areas. Here I would ask that if CAB is detrimental for ILP and Sixth Schedule areas, then how come it is good for the rest of the Northeast. If CAB is bad for seven districts of Assam, how can it be good for the rest of the state,” he asked.

In regard to Centre’s promise to introduce ILP in Manipur, Bhattacharjya said the leaders of the ruling dispensation of the other states, barring Assam, have upheld indigenous interests. “But ironically, our leaders, who have been part of the Assam Agitation, have cared less about the state for political interests,” he said.

“But we cannot let the sacrifices of the 860 martyrs of the Assam Agitation go in vain. We cannot be reduced to second class citizens amid illegal Bangladeshis in future. Therefore we have to protest for our rights,” the NESO leader added.

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