Students and Youth All Over India Rise against Anti-People, Communal and Divisive ‘Citizens Amendment Act’ and ‘National Register of Citizenship’
Students and youth all over India have come out on roads to protest against the recently enacted Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the proposed National Citizenship Register (NRC) in all states of the country.
They are opposing the government’s attempt to spread communal hatred and divide people. They are opposing the targeting of Muslim community.
People are asking why we, who have been born in India and have been living here for generations, should prove our citizenship. Let the government prove it if it suspects somebody to be an “illegal immigrant”.
The proposed NRC across the country is anti-people. Crores of people, whether they are Hindus or Muslim or follower of other faiths, do not have any documentary proof to this day that they are Indian citizens. How many of our parents and grandparents have birth and marriage certificate to prove citizenship? How many of us can create a family tree going back to our grandparents and prove it? In Assam people faced huge problems to submit the documents required by the NRC.
Women, large numbers of slum and footpath dwellers in different regions of the country, adivasis, people who have migrated from their homes to other provinces in search of livelihood, will face maximum difficulty to submit documents for the NRC.
This is what happened when NRC was carried out in Assam. Many people of the Hindu faith as well as Muslims could not submit the relevant documents demanded by the government and became ‘illegal immigrants’. Many people put in detention camps have lost their lives due to terrible conditions in these camps. Will it not also happen when NRC is carried out in rest of the country? The NRC is therefore an attack on people of all faiths – Hindus, Muslims, Buddhists, Sikhs, Christians and other believers and non-believers.
The Citizenship Amendment Act is thoroughly communal and divisive because:
1) It grants or denies citizenship on the basis of religion;
2) People of the Muslim faith, victims of political persecution, refugees from Sri Lanka, Myanmar and other countries have been deliberately excluded;
3) It deliberately excludes large number of refugees — Tibetans from China, Tamils from Sri Lanka, Rohingyas from Myanmar, Chakmas from former East Pakistan.
It is shameful that human beings are called “termites”, “vermin” by the Prime Minister and Home Minister. Does following a particular religion convert a human being into an insect?
India’s Citizenship Act is extremely anti-people. People who have lived for generations in this country, can be arrested and jailed for being “illegal immigrants”. While the act says that all those born in India before 1987 are to be considered Indian citizens, lakhs of people who came to India as refugees more than 5 decades ago – Tibetans, Chakmas, and others – have not been granted citizenship.
We cannot accept that people who have lived in India for generations are suddenly declared to be non-citizens, criminalised, denied their human rights, treated as stateless people, and forced to live in detention camps.
The CAA and NRC will result in escalation of communal division in the society. They will be used to target Muslims as well as migrant workers from other states.
Spark-The Voice of Youth calls upon all students, youth and other Indian people, irrespective of their religious faith, to unitedly oppose the CAA and the proposed NRC.