NESO members raise key issues during region-wide protests

AASU vows to sustain anti-CAA stir, highlight unresolved problems

Guwahati, Aug 17: The North East Students’ Organisation (NESO) on Wednesday held protest demonstrations over key issues concerning the region across the state capitals of the Northeast.

In Guwahati, the protest demonstration was held under the aegis of All Assam Students’ Union (AASU) with hundreds of members of NESO assembling at the Swahid Nyash Bhawan in Uzanbazar here, holding placards and shouting slogans, even as security forces were deployed in front of the AASU headquarters and barricades put in place to stop the members from taking out a rally in the streets.

Among the charter of demands put forth by NESO include repeal of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), permanent solution of the foreigners’ influx issue, elimination of operations of fundamentalist groups in the region, time-bound implementation of the Assam Accord, introduction of inner-line permit (ILP) in all states of the Northeast, provision of Constitutional safeguards to the indigenous people of the region, withdrawal of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) from the entire Northeast, implementation of a separate time zone for Northeast, declaration of Assam’s annual flood/erosion as a national problem, besides resolving the Chakma-Hajong issue in Arunachal Pradesh.

Addressing the gathering at Swahid Nyash Bhawan, NESO adviser and All Assam Students’ Union (AASU) chief adviser, Samujjal Bhattacharjya said that despite attempts by the state government to suppress the democratic agitation, the students unions of the region, under the banner of NESO, would continue to push for its key demands including just repeal of CAA.

“The Assam government has deployed security personnel and put up barricades to stop members of NESO from coming to the city. The government has attempted to suppress our agitation, which is indicative that it is threatened by our democratic and peaceful agitation, which we pledge to continue,” Bhattacharjya alleged.

The NESO leader further said that Assam might have to face the fate where the primary or the state language turns out to be secondary which has been witnessed in Tripura.

In May this year, NESO reiterated that it would never accept CAA in Assam and other states of the Northeast.

“’The Centre should scrap the Act. If implemented, it will affect all the northeastern states. It will reduce the indigenous people in the region to second-class citizens in their respective states. Already, many indigenous communities in the northeastern states are under threat. For the greater interest of the Northeast, we don’t accept the CAA,” the NESO had then issued a statement.

Earlier, on the occasion of the 37th anniversary of the signing of the historic Assam Accord in 1985, the AASU leadership reiterated that it would continue their democratic movement simultaneously along with a legal battle against CAA.

On the eve of NESO’s region-wide protest, Assam special DGP (law and order) G.P Singh Police (law and order) had made an appeal through the media, urging people of the state to unite for development and not take the path of agitation.

 

 

 

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