Take us into Confidence on Citizenship Bill: Conrad Sangma to Amit Shah

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Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad Sangma. — File photo

GUWAHATI (PTI) — Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad Sangma on Monday told Union Home Minster Amit Shah that the Northeast has fears on the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill and urged him to take all the states of the region into confidence before bringing in the legislation again.

Addressing the fourth conclave of the North East Democratic Alliance (NEDA) in Guwahati in the presence of Amit Shah, Conrad Sangma questioned whether the Centre will bypass discussions with the states before reintroducing the bill.

“What will happen after CAB? Will people continuously come from Bangladesh? Will there be any deadline or a continuous flow? We in Northeast have such fears,” Conrad Sangma said.

He requested the Centre to invite all stakeholders to discuss and arrive at a consensus over the issue.

“We are under the sixth schedule. So will the CAB overlook local laws? Please invite us and look into the interests of the people of the Northeast. Remove our fears. I believe you (Shah) will take care of our fears,” Conrad Sangma told the Union Home Minister.

The Bill provided for according Indian citizenship to Hindus, Jains, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists and Parsis from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan after seven years of residence in India instead of 12 years, which is the norm currently, even if they do not possess any document.

The Lok Sabha had passed the bill on January 8 but it was not tabled in the Rajya Sabha.

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