Slamming the Congress and its allies for ignoring the minorities who have sought shelter in India, PM Narendra Modi, on Thursday said that the Congress had only used them for political motives and denied them citizenship while addressing a rally in Jharkhand's Dhanbad. He stated that the Congress leaders had themselves promised the refugees of citizenship but then had gone back on their words. Moreover, he said that Indians from various religions are not bothered by CAB - this was a rumour spread by Congress and its allies.
"Their houses were captured, their places of worship destroyed, atrocities committed against women. Such thousands of persecuted people have been coming to India from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh and have been staying in India for decades. They have been used for political uses, but have only gotten promises of citizenship. Prior to any elections, some Congress leader has promised citizenship to these people. They have also said they will citizenship to Hindus, Sikh from Bangladesh, but they went back on those words yesterday," he said.
He added, "Dozens of Christian families came to India when the Taliban attacked Afghanistan. But they were ignored by Congress government. BJP has made a law to help such Sikh, Christian, Dalit and persecuted minorities, then Congress is opposing that too. You have truly recognised Congress. Hindus, Muslims, Buddhists, Christians who are already a part of India are not bothered by this Bill at all. But such kind of lies are being spread by Congress and its allies."
Pointing out the exemptions in the bill, he slammed the Congress for instilling violence which is currently rampant in Assam and parts of Tripura. He assured the North-Easterners that their indigenous culture will not be affected by CAB and he appealed them to refrain from violence as the Centre was committed to their development. He further appealed Asam to put their faith in Modi.
"They are also trying set fire to the Northeast. Rumours are being spread that a large number of Bangladeshis will enter that area, while the law is for those who are already in India by December 31, 2014. Most of North-East states have been exempted from the law, but Congress is instilling the fear of infiltrators in the minds of North-East citizens," he said.
He added, "I wish to assure Assam and its neighbouring states that your traditions, languages will not only be protected but will be enriched by the BJP. The Modi government will work in co-operation with the various unions, committees, organisations of the North-East for their development. I have visited Assam personally more number of times than all previous PMs put together. I wish to appeal to the youth of Assam to trust your worker - to trust Modi."
On Wednesday, the Rajya Sabha passed the Citizenship Amendment Bill, 2019 (CAB) by a majority of 125-105 votes. The Citizenship Amendment Bill amends the Citizenship Act 1955 to make refugees who are Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan, eligible for citizenship. Moreover, the Bill exempts exempt the inner line permit areas in Nagaland, Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh and areas falling under the Sixth Schedule in the region and will be applicable to the members of these communities having arrived in India on or before December 31, 2014.
Protests against the bill have been rampant across the North-East especially in Assam. Tens of thousands of protesters against CAB descended on the streets of Assam on Wednesday, clashing with police, with a large number of protestors detained by the police in Guwahati, Dibrugarh, etc. Reports state that five columns of Army have been deployed at several places in the state and in Tripura, while the Assam government has imposed curfew and discontinued mobile internet and data services for 24 hours across 10 districts.