Even as Assam witnesses massive protests against the CAA, in a show of strength on Saturday, thousands of BJP workers participated in a public meeting in Guwahati where the party’s top leaders spoke on the new citizenship law, the Centre’s development work in the region, and the state government’s commitment towards development and protection of interests of indigenous communities of Assam.
Maintaining that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has promised citizenship to only those “who are already in India”, BJP working president J P Nadda said, “Lakhs of people had to run to India overnight to save their land, dignity of their brothers, their family… People who have come to India, where would they go? India is their home. We will allow them to live with dignity. We will give them citizenship. This is what CAA has done.”
Addressing the meet, state Finance Minister Himanta Biswa said that three years ago there was only “one Ajmal”, referring to Lok Sabha MP and AIUDF chief Badruddin Ajmal, but today there are “lakhs and lakhs of Ajmals”.
He said BJP karyakartas have to fight to “save Assam from those who write Miya poetry, from the likes of Ajmals, such ultra communal forces”.
“Miya poetry” was a reference to works of poets and activists of Bengali-speaking Muslim community of Assam who write in a dialect colloquially called the ‘Miya’ dialect. Ajmal’s AIUDF draws much of its support from among Bengali-speaking Muslims in the state.
Highlighting the BJP government’s work in the state, Sarma said, “We have worked for the people, we have worked for our motherland, we have worked to free Assam from the Ajmals. And let me tell you, till there is the last drop of blood in our bodies, we will continue to fight against the likes of Badruddin Ajmal (Lok Sabha MP).”
Nadda targeted the Opposition and said, “They are claiming that so many crores (or people) will come. No one will come. They are already here from the days you (Congress) were in power.”
He also said that Clause 6 of Assam Accord would be implemented: “To protect Assam’s culture is our responsibility, it is Bharat Mata’s responsibility which we will fulfill.”
The government has pitched implementation of Clause 6 of Assam Accord as an antidote to protests against the CAA in the state. Clause 6 states, “Constitutional, legislative and administrative safeguards, as may be appropriate, shall be provided to protect, preserve and promote the cultural, social, linguistic identity and heritage of the Assamese people.” A high-level committee is preparing its report which will recommend the suggestions for implementation of Clause 6 and the state government has said it will take up the report as soon as it is submitted.
Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, BJP national general secretary Ram Madhav, and party’s state unit chief Ranjeet Dass also addressed the meet, with participants mainly comprising booth-level workers and leaders.
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