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Tuesday, July 31, 2018 11:42:01 PM
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4 million Muslim Assamese turning into refugees: Weak leadership against India is no help

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THE Modi government has stripped of citizenship of 40.07 lakh Bengalis in Assam, sparking fears of mass deportations of Muslims from the Indian north-eastern state to other neigbouring countries. A new draft of the National Register of Citizens includes only those able to prove they were in Assam before 1971. However, it is the latest move by the right-wing Bharatiya Janata Party government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to bolster India's Hindu majority at the expense of minorities, including Assam's Muslim population, on the pretext of weeding out so-called Bangladeshi migrants.
The point, however, the move will not only potentially lead to disrupt communal harmony in Assam, but it would also invite violence in other places also. There are reportedly more than 2 million Muslims in Assam with their roots in Bangladesh, most of who - were either displaced from nearby places or settled in Assam in 1947 and March 25, 1971. The apparent fear for Bangladesh could be another exodus of refugees, already the country is reeling from the ongoing Rohingya crisis.
Bangladesh and Indian Assam state share borders. There are many children and women among them - turning the area into a melting pot of Bengalis, Biharis, Hindus, Muslims  who were born and raised as Indians - and all of a sudden the ground beneath their feet is about to get vanished.
The Indian government is clearly turning Indian people into refugees in their own country. It's clearly a bigoted and an organised scheme for denying lawful citizen rights of Muslims in Assam. The international community must take serious note of this dangerous development in Assam and inform the Indian government - what it is doing is unethical and unfair.
If there is a tiny possibility of deportation of these people towards Bangladesh the government should not remain silent while there is still time. Dhaka should immediately ask New Delhi how they intend to accommodate the 40 lakh people. This is no time for diplomacy of appeasement.

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