Guwahati, December 9: While Parliament was debating contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019, a massive protest was held by students in Assam. As many as 16 outfits, including students' organisation, observed state-wide shutdown protesting the proposed legislation which seeks to grant Indian citizenship to non-Muslim refugees from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan. The bandh crippled normal life in several districts of Assam. Citizenship Amendment Bill Sparks Protests in Tripura, Life Cripples After Call for Shutdown Against CAB.
As part of the protest, students from Guwahati University Cotton University, JB Law College, Guwahati Law College, Silpi Samaj and Assam Engineering College took out a candle march in Jalukbari to protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill. The North East Students Organisation also called for a bandh in the entire Northeast against the controversial legislation. The impact of the bandh was negligible in Guwahati. Citizenship Amendment Bill Debate: Manipur to be Exempted Via Inner Line Permit, Says Amit Shah; Here's How ILP Will Offset CAB Impact.
Shops, markets and financial institutions kept their shutters down, while schools and colleges were closed in the districts of Lakhimpur, Dhemaji, Tinsukia, Dibrugarh, Sivasagar, Jorhat, Majuli, Morigaon, Bongaigaon, Udalguri, Kokrajhar and Baksa after the bandh began at 5 am. However, the impact of the shutdown was minimal in Bengali dominated Barak Valley districts of Cachar, Karimganj and Hailakandi as well as the hill districts of Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao.
— DD (@Dhritashri1) December 9, 2019
In protest against the CAB, agitators burnt tyres and blocked national highways, drawing police intervention. Foreign and domestic tourists in rhino-habitat Kaziranga National Park and Jorhat were stranded due to the bandh. The North East Students Organisation, the apex body of all the student bodies of the region, has called an 11-hour Northeast bandh on Tuesday.
The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019, which seeks to give Indian nationality to non-Muslim refugees from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan facing religious persecution there, was introduced in Lok Sabha by Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Monday.