Students lead mega protest rally against CAA in Nagaland

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HT Correspondent

DIMAPUR, Jan 18: Nagaland against CAA, an uprising against the Citizenship Amendment Act led by the Naga public, held a protest rally at Supermarket here, demanding repeal of the Act.

Various speakers at the rally raised concerns on the possibility of the indigenous people getting demographically overwhelmed and marginalised by illegal immigrants from outside the country because of the Act.

Nagaland has been excluded from the purview of CAA because of the inner line permit (ILP) that is in force in the state. Dimapur district, which was earlier not under the ILP regime, was brought under the system on December 10 last year, a day before the CAA was passed in parliament.

Amid speeches by student leaders and civil society members, songs, skits and on the spot painting competitions based on anti-CAA theme were held during the rally. The rallysts, mostly college students, were seen holding placards that read “We stand united against CAA”, “My stand against CAA”, “Modiji aapka CAA unsecular”, etc.

A representative of Dimapur Gaonbura (village chiefs) Federation asked, “How can we accommodate outsiders when we cannot stand on our own feet.” Vowing to oppose the CAA at any cost, he said the Nagas will not allow a single foreigner to settle in their soil.

A leader of Nagaland University Students Union (Lumami Campus) said the Nagaland University students are against CAA. He urged the student community to know their right and fight for it.

“We want democracy, not CAA,” he said. The Tenymi Students Union Dimapur described the CAA as an “organised crime”. Nagaland University Students Union (Kohima Campus) called the Act a “silent bomb which may explode any time”.

He said Assam is like the mother of Northeast. “If Assam goes, whole Northeast will go”, he said implying that if Assam is affected by the CAA, entire Northeast region will bear its brunt. He also sought to know how can the Assam Accord and CAA on the same issue of illegal immigrants be implemented at the same time.

A representative of the North East Indigenous Citizens Forum, Nagaland, accused Narendra Modi government of dividing India by bringing in CAA. “Where is secularism under BJP government,” he asked.

He said the CAA is a real threat to the indigenous people of the Northeast and that it will reduce them to minority in their own land. He said the people of the Northeast will continue to fight against the Act and will win.

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