Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said his Government will ensure that the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill 2016 does not cause any harm to Assam and other parts of the Northeast.
“I am here to assure you that the Bill will not harm Assam or any other state in the region. The Bill will only allow those persecuted minorities to apply for citizenship. There is no question of granting citizenship without verification,” he said
He was addressing a public rally near Guwahati while inaugurating several development projects amid protests by various organisations across the region. “The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill 2016 is not for Assam or northeastern states. It is for the whole country.”
The Government, he said, is committed to ensure that there are no illegal foreigners in Assam and the country.
“The Bill is a national commitment considering the plight of the persecuted minorities in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh. The passage of the Bill will ensure that those who were left out during the Partition and who still love India more than their lives are accommodated in the country. It is the responsibility of India to accept those people,” he said.
The Prime Minister attacked the Congress by holding it responsible for the delay in conferring Bharat Ratna to the late Bhupen Hazarika and Gopinath Bordoloi.
“Although music maestro Bhupen Hazarika and Gopinath Bordoloi were worthy of Bharat Ratna, the conferring of the honour to them was delayed for decades by the previous governments. It is the BJP government during whose tenure Bharat Ratna was conferred to both the worthy sons of Assam,” he said.
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“I want to ask them why the real jewels had to wait for decades to be recognised as Bharat Ratna, while for some the honour was fixed immediately after their birth,” he added.