DIMAPUR, Nov 19: The 18-hour Nagaland shutdown against the Citizenship Amendment Bill began at 6pm on Tuesday with shops and business establishments downing their shutters all over the state. The shutdown will end at noon on Wednesday.
There were no reports of any untoward incident during the initial period of the bandh called by the Joint Committee for Prevention of Illegal Immigrants (JCPI) at the directive of the North East Forum for Indigenous Peoples (NEFIP), which is spearheading the movement against the bill in the Northeast region.
Sources said adequate security arrangements have been put in place all over the state to thwart any untoward incident.
Though vehicular traffic and examinations have been exempted, the NEFIP and JCPI, in a joint release on Tuesday, asked the public to stay indoor and the business establishments to voluntarily down their shutters during the bandh period to show solidarity with the other north eastern states in the fight against the Centre’s move to push the bill in the ongoing winter session of Parliament.
Both the organisations urged the people of the state to extend their cooperation and bear with the inconveniences by suspending all normal activities and engagements to give a collective message to the government of India to withdraw the CAB.
They also appealed to all different institutions and establishments to reorganise their schedules for peaceful observance of the bandh.
“The appeal is purely a conscience call to reject the ‘monstrous bill’. This few hours of sacrifice will go a long way to determine the destiny of our future generations,” the joint release said.
It also advised the commuters or the travellers to display their identity in the event of any emergency.
The Naga Students Federation directed its federating units and subordinate bodies to tie up with the shutdown organisers to ensure that the strike does affect the students not only while commuting to and from their examination centres but also while availing the stationeries required for their examinations.
The federation also placed on record its total resentment against the proposed bill. It assured the public that it will leave no stone unturned in order to ensure that the bill does not see the light of the day.
The Naga Mothers’ Association expressed solidarity with the JCPI and the NEFIP and extended its support to the statewide shutdown called to register protest against the bill.
The Nagaland Tribes Council extended support to the voices of the indigenous people being raised in Nagaland under the banner of JCPI and NEFIP.
The council appealed to the indigenous people of Nagaland, tribal hohos, various civil society organisations, youth and student bodies to stand solidarity against the bill and extend all possible support to the movement in order to make the region free of illegal immigrants once and for all.