Wages of Cong sins
Should Assam be sending its illegal migrants across the borders That is the big question that stares into the face of more than four million people in Assam The draft copy of the National Register of Citizenship is out and there are apprehensions that those who do not make it to the list would be stripped of all rights they are enjoying here in the country
Should Assam be sending its illegal migrants across the borders? That is the big question that stares into the face of more than four million people in Assam. The draft copy of the National Register of Citizenship is out and there are apprehensions that those who do not make it to the list would be stripped of all rights they are enjoying here in the country.
The first NRC was prepared in 1951 to know how many illegal Bangladeshi immigrants were living in India. Between 1951-61 Assam's population registered a whopping 36 per cent growth and it continued the levels later too. The national decadal growth rate was only 22-25 per cent during the period. Everyone blamed the then East Pakistan unrest for the same.
However, after the 1971 Indo-Pak war, the number of voters in Assam grew by 50 per cent and in Mangoldoi LS segment alone 50,000 illegal voters (D-voter or doubtful voter) were discovered. Assam agitated against the same since 1979 which ended in 1985 with the Assam Accord with the key agreement that the 1951 NRC would be updated with 1971 as a cut-off date for illegal migration.
If the socio-economic conditions on hand and the post war conditions were one of the external reasons, internally for India, the criminal role played by the Congress leaders in encouraging migration was another big reason for the spurt in migration. Congress leaders began encouraging illegal migration and readily provided them with ration cards and voter IDs to boost their vote banks.
Same thing happened in West Bengal, too. All this went on despite the fact that the locals were feeling suffocated in the presence of such vast numbers of outsiders. In fact, the situation worsened to such an extent that the dirty politics of Congress leadership resulted in a major demographic shift. In all, 14 districts out of 27 districts in Assam show higher population growth than the State's average.
Nine of these are now Muslim-majority districts. This had such an impact on the very culture and language of Assamese that the Assam speaking population has drastically come down to 48 per cent from the 58 per cent. Should this be encouraged? It was Congress which began the NRC and appointed a Cabinet committee, too, following the agitation and Accord.
Why does it oppose the same now? Again, the role of dirty minds come into picture here. While the government could consider providing biometric work permits to the illegal immigrants, clarity would still be required over their political and property rights. Most of them have become land owners in India, too.
Of course, the exclusion from the registry itself does not permit the country to declare them as illegal citizens. It is the job of a tribunal to do so. This only means two million cases in front of the tribunals and other courts. It is time no one in the country brings religion into it. This is a national exercise in the interest of the nation.