Staff Reporter GUWAHATI, Dec 12 - A sea of humanity defied curfew and congregated at the historic Latasil playground today to register their democratic protest against Citizenship Amendment Bill asserting that passing of the bill in the Parliament is not the end of battle for the people of Assam.
AASU chief advisor Samujjal Bhattacharyya addressing the crowd at Latasil playground. – UB Photos
The massive public protest, at the initiative of All Assam Students’ Union (AASU), was spontaneously supported by the artiste community, legal fraternity and journalists apart from students and groups of residents from multiple localities of the capital city.
The AASU leaders warned the protestors to be careful about attempts by fringe elements to incite violence amid the democratic movement.
Urging the protesting masses to exercise restraint and desist from any undemocratic means of protest, AASU Chief advisor Dr. Samujjal Bhattacharyya said that a team of Supreme Court advocates have already started working on the legal recourses available.
“The AASU and the people of Assam would keep fighting the battle both on the streets as well as in court. It is our Parliament which has violated the Constitution. We are on the right side and at any moment, none of us should get disheartened. Let’s file as many petitions as possible in the apex court. We will fight till it is ensured that the decision making power is totally entrusted at the hands of the indigenous people of Assam. Already we have taken the burden of migrants from 1951 to 1971 and in no circumstances would take the load of illegal migrants up to 2014,” Bhattacharyya said while addressing the gathering.
He also clarified that the protest was neither anti-Bengali nor anti-Hindu or anti-Muslim.
“We are protesting against illegal foreigners and any communal colour should not be given to it,” he said.
The AASU has called a hunger strike tomorrow at the AEI field Chandmari and has asked people to extend full support.
Popular actress Barasha Rani Bishaya, who has been vocal against CAB, stated that the political leaders of the State, who were supposed to protect the indigenous communities, have broken their trust.
Another actor Ravi Sarma, who recently resigned from the BJP protesting CAB, also stated that every indigenous Assamese was against this controversial legislation and the government cannot ignore the protest for long.
Evoking a rousing response from thousands gathered in and around Latasil field, singing sensation Zubeen Garg sang his popular song Politics Nokoriba Bandhu, asking the political leaders not to seek political benefits out of an issue that involves the question of existence for people.
AASU general secretary Lurinjyoti Gogoi asked people to keep a close eye on those trying to communalize the movement or provoke violence.
“Delhi wants more violence and breakdown of the legal machinery so that they can use more force on us. Our protest should be strong, but not violent,” he added.
Despite the fact that the protestors were held back by the security personnel stationed at various locations, hordes of people continue pouring in at the protest venue even after the event was declared over for the day.
A sizeable number of people waited outside Swahid Nyas, the city office of AASU till late evening expressing their solidarity with the cause.
Senior journalist Nitumani Saikia mentioned that a number of senior editors have boycotted the meeting called by Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal protesting the legislation. Prashanta Rajguru, Editor of Amar Asom added that the way people have flouted curfew, they will also ensure that CAB is struck off.
AASU president Dipanka Kumar Nath asserted that deploying armed forces or clamping curfew won’t weaken the people’s movement.
Others who spoke on the occasion included senior journalists Ajit Kumar Bhuyan and Haider Hussain and advocates Nekibur Zaman and Arup Borbora.