* Security has also been tightened in view of the ‘Black Day’ protests scheduled to be observed by the civil societies in Mizoram today against the contentious bill. Security has been beefed up in Aizawl and over 50 big towns and villages across the state for the protest rallies to be organised under the aegis of the NGO Coordination Committee – the umbrella organisation of major civil societies and students’ bodies.
* The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, which was passed in the Lok Sabha on January 8, aims at granting citizenship to non-Muslims from Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Afghanistan‚ who came to India before December 31, 2014.
* Arunachal Pradesh chief minister Pema Khandu also changed his stance on the citizenship bill, asking home minister Rajnath Singh not to table the bill in Rajya Sabha. Khandu, who is heading a BJP government in the border state, had been so far defending the bill which is facing strong opposition from civil society groups and the opposition Congress in his state and across the Northeast.
* The Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) snapped its ties with the BJP and pulled out of Sarbananda Sonowal-led Assam government over the bill on January 7.
* Earlier on February 10, Meghalaya chief minister Conrad Sangma had stated that his party, National People’s Party (NPP), has decided that if the central government passes the bill in the Rajya Sabha, then they will break ties with the NDA.
* On Monday, Tez Hazarika, the New York-based son of Bhupen Hazarika, has said his father’s name and words were being invoked and celebrated publicly even as plans were afoot to pass the “painfully unpopular” Citizenship (Amendment) Bill. In a Facebook post on Monday, Tez described the proposed legislation as “undermining” the “documented position” of his father.
* The BJP has said the government wants to resolve the problem of illegal migrants. Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday urged the people to not be carried away by the rumours.
* Home minister Rajnath Singh on Monday cancelled his meeting with chief ministers of Northeastern states to discuss the bill. The sudden cancellation of the meeting assumes significance in the wake of the ongoing widespread protests in the northeastern states.
* Protests against the bill have rocked the entire northeast over the past six weeks, with several organisations and political parties claiming that the bill threatens the identity, language and culture of indigenous people.
(With agency inputs)