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Left-Democratic Manch stages protest against CAA

Protesters at a sit-in demonstration against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, organised by the Left-Democratic Manch at Lakhidhar Bora Kshetra, in Guwahati on Sunday. – UB Photos
 GUWAHATI, Dec 15 - The Left-Democratic Manch, Assam – a conglomeration of 11 Left and democratic parties of the State – today staged a protest demonstration here against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA).

 Around 500 protesters gathered at Lakhidhar Bora Kshetra at 11 am raising anti-CAA and anti-government slogans. Members of different political parties, students from Cotton University, intellectual Dr Hiren Gohain, senior journalists Haidar Hussain and Maini Mahanta, and educationist Udayaditya Bharali, among others took part in the protest.

The Act has triggered massive protests in Assam and the other Northeastern States. People from all walks of life expressed their resentment against the amended citizenship law and made it clear that they would not accept it in any form.

Though Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal had appealed to all sections of people to maintain peace and harmony in the State and asserted that the government is fully committed to protecting the interests of the people, going by the intensity of the protests, it seems the protesters are far from assuaged by his words.

The Chief Minister yesterday sought to assuage the apprehensions among the people stemming from the CAA by saying that there is nothing to be apprehensive about the Act because only a small number of migrants who had already settled in Assam would be granted Indian citizenship.

Dr Gohain said, “The Citizenship (Amendment) Act, which is against the interest of the people of Assam, cannot be accepted in any form. There is a massive protest going on against the Act and it should be continued till it is scrapped. The State government is following a divide-and-rule policy to mislead the people of the State. The Centre has amended the Citizenship Act by violating the Indian Constitution.”

Dr Gohain also condemned the police atrocities and death of five protesters in firing, saying that “from the very beginning this government is trying to suppress the voice of the people and the killing of the unarmed protesters testifies to it. The government should have immediately provided Rs 10 lakh to the families of the martyrs.”

“I urge all organisations, political parties and the people of the State to unitedly protest against it for the sake of Assam,” he added.

Convener of the manch Deben Bhattacharya said, “We demand that the State government take steps to restore normalcy in the State immediately. The government should have taken immediate steps to resume internet connectivity, transportation and all means of communication in the State.”

The manch further condemned the arrest leaders like Akhil Gogoi and other protesters, and demanded their immediate release.

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