The AASU and Opposition Congress and the AIUDF came down heavily on Prime Minister Narendra Modi for avoiding references to key issues like the repeal of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and “unfulfilled poll promises” during his visit to Assam on Saturday. The All Assam Students’ Union (AASU) staged sit-in demonstrations across the state with black clothes tied to their face during the prime minister’s visit to Sivasagar to distribute land ‘pattas’.
The AASU launched several programmes during Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s visit to the state, demanding the repeal of CAA and Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) and the implementation of the Clause Six Committee’s report, AASU advisor Samujjal Bhattacharya said. “The prime minister today kept mum on the key issues.
On one hand, they are distributing land pattas to indigeneous people while on the other, they are imposing the CAA. “We want to make it clear to both the central and state governments that there can be no bargaining on the CAA with the land patta issue which is a constitutional right of the indigenous people,” Bhattacharya said.
The AASU wants a permanent solution to the primary issues the state is facing, he said. “The prime minister “did not utter a single word on the core issues like the implementation of the Assam Accord, the National Register of Citizens (NRC), the Clause Six Committee report and on flood and erosion problems,” he said.
State Congress chief Ripun Bora criticised the prime minister for “failing to address any of the key issues including unfulfilled poll promises”. “The Congress had posed 24 questions to the prime minister but he was silent on the implementation of the report of the Clause Six Committee, the Assam Accord, the contentious CAA, flood and erosion and the reopening the two closed paper mills among others,” he said.
“The distribution of land pattas is a routine matter the state government can deal with. Today’s programme was the BJP government’s ploy to divert attention of the people from its failure,” Bora said. AIUDF general secretary Aminul Islam said that the distribution of pattas was a “political gimmick” and it is surprising how the prime minister gave the certificates to the indigenous people without defining who is indigenous.
“This is a part of the BJP’s divisive policy to implement the land policy of 2019 by which only people of certain communities will be allotted land pattas,” he said. Genuine Indian citizens who are landless should be given land pattas, irrespective of their religion or community, Islam added.