Protests against the Citizenship Amendment Bill continued in Assam on Saturday – the second day of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the North East. Protestors waved black flags at Modi for the second straight day in Guwahati, PTI reported.
Modi, who was on his way to the airport from the Raj Bhavan, was greeted with black flags at the Machkhowa area by protestors from the Asom Jatiyatabadi Yuva Chhatra Parishad. A group of students waved black flags at the prime minister again a few minutes later as his convoy passed by the Gauhati University in the city’s Jalukbari locality. According to the Hindustan Times, seven people have been detained.
On Friday evening, black flag demonstrations were held at four locations while the prime minister travelled from from Guwahati’s Lokopriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport to the Raj Bhavan. Gauhati University students, activists of the Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti, the Asom Jatiyatabadi Yuva Chhatra Parishad and the All Assam Students Union took part in the demonstrations.
The Citizenship Amendment bill seeks to amend a 1955 law to grant citizenship to persecuted Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs, Jains, Parsis and Christians from the Muslim-majority nations of Bangladesh, Afghanistan and Pakistan if they have lived in India for six years. Most northeastern states have opposed the proposed legislation, and it has sparked protests in the region.
BJP will bring change in Arunachal Pradesh: PM
Meanwhile, Modi travelled to Arunacal Pradesh’s capital Itanagar from Guwahati to lay the foundation of development projects worth more than Rs 4,000 crore, PTI reported.
Modi laid the foundation stone for the construction of a greenfield airport at Hollongi and inaugurated a renovated airport at Tezu in Lohit district. “Tezu airport was built over 50 years but no government envisioned to connect people of this state with other parts of the country,” he said. “We expanded the airport by spending around Rs 125 crore.”
Modi said previous government had neglected the state for decades, but the BJP would bring change. “New India can only be built if North East can be developed well,” he added.
The prime minister also dedicated to the nation the 110 MW Pare Hydroelectric Plant and laid the foundation stone for a permanent campus of the Film and Television Institute of India in Jote.
The prime minister is also scheduled to address public meetings in Amingaon in Assam, and Tripura’s capital Agartala on Saturday.