Assamese singer Zubeen Garg, who sang the Bharatiya Janata Party’s election campaign song in the state, offered to return his fee to the party to protest the saffron party-led government’s controversial Citizenship (Amendment) Bill. Garg’s offer follows his letter to Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal demanding that the BJP surrender the votes it procured because of the song he sang.
“Wrote a letter to you few days back. Guess you are too busy counting the black flags to respond,” Garg wrote on Facebook on Sunday. “So, can I get the votes back that you earned using my voice in 2016? I am ready to refund the remuneration.”
Garg sang Axomor Ananda Sarbananda (Assam’s Happiness Sarbananda) in the run-up to the Assembly elections in the state in 2016. The BJP had won the elections and formed a coalition government with the Asom Gana Parishad and the Bodoland People’s Front. Earlier this month, the Asom Gana Parishad pulled out of the alliance to oppose the Citizenship Bill. Three Asom Gana Parishad state ministers quit last week.s
There has been violence and turmoil in the North East against the controversial draft law. The bill seeks to amend the Citizenship Act of 1955 in order to grant citizenship to Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs, Jains, Parsis and Christians from Bangladesh, Afghanistan and Pakistan if they have lived in India for six years, even if they do not possess the necessary documents.