Diphu, February 26, 2020:
Fear still prevails in the tribes-dominated Karbi Anglong area of Assam where the people fear that the BJP-led Government’s imposition of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act will pose a threat to their lands, culture, as well as identity.
Talking to Inside Northeast, Thang sing Timung, the General Secretary of the Karbi Students’ Association, says that the Karbis and other tribes living in the region fear that the influx of more advanced communities to the region might harm the interests of the people. “After implementation of the CAA, migrants might come here and dominate. Tribals are simple and welcoming people. However, they fear that if these other factions come here to live, they might soon start dominating us.”
“There is a fear, because tribal people are not educated. Karbi Anglong has now become the hub of illegal migrants…huge parts are dominated by illegal Bangladeshis. Tribal population is declining…”, he further adds.
Timung also points to a statement made by Assam Minister and Chief architect of the CAA, Himanta Biswa Sarma, as proof that the Government truly is opening the doors for illegal immigrants to settle in the region. “In West Karbi Anglong, how many will get citizenship? Only 700”, the Minister had said, during a speech delivered at Guwahati, Assam, during which he was defending the CAA.
This speech sparked widespread controversy among the Karbis, and sparked protests across the region.
Meanwhile, the lackadaisical attitude of Karbi Anglong Autonomous Council (KAAC) CEM Tuliram Ronghang has also been strongly condemned by the Karbi student body.
Semson Teron, the President of the organization, talking to Inside Northeast, says: “Our CEM, Tuliram Ronghang, called on Union Home Minister Amit Shah, urging him to exempt the Karbi-dwelling areas from the purview of the CAA. Again, the same Tuliram was seen participating in a BJP rally supporting the same Act in Jagiroad. This begs the question: what is Tuliram’s actual stance regarding the CAA? He should clarify.”
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