Hundreds of All Assam Minority Students’ Union members on Monday staged a protest in Delhi’s Jantar Mantar against the “selective evictions” and assaults against the northeast state’s minorities.
The group also submitted a 12-point memorandum to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, seeking proper rehabilitation of people adversely affected by forced eviction drive carried out in the state.
The protesters in the national capital said the forced evictions carried out by the BJP government have rendered thousands of Indian citizens homeless.
On September 23, the forced eviction drive in the Sipajhar area of Darrang district had turned violent and two Muslims including a 12-year-old child were killed in police firing. The Muslims of Bengali origin who were protesting against the eviction, brutally attacked by the BJP government’s police.
“Such actions of the state without proper rehabilitation of its citizens has infringed the basic human rights of its citizens and more specifically have jeapordisd women and child rights,” said the AAMSU.
In its memorandum, the AAMSU highlighted policemen hitting the dead man with sticks and the photographer jumping on his body. Such incidents, the student body said, “shamed the entire mankind”.
The memorandum said that the evicted families have been forced to sleep in the open and are facing a shortage of food, drinking water, and medicines.
Two children among them have reportedly died.
The memorandum said though a large section of the people of the minority community has settled on the river banks in the state and made use of the fertile soil over the years, they have also been victims of flood and erosion leading to their frequent migration to other habitable lands.
“The government of Assam without verifying the historical reality and on some vested political agenda has engaged themselves in an arbitrary, selective and illegal eviction spree by evicting genuine families from their homestead without rehabilitating them and thereby forcing people to live a beastly nomadic life,” read the memorandum.
The memorandum addressed to the Prime Minister was handed over to police officers at the demonstration site at Jantar Mantar in New Delhi.
The student body of religious and linguistic minority communities of Assam also requested the Prime Minister to resume the NRC process and complete it within a stipulated time frame.
It asked the union government to provide them with Aadhaar cards without any condition. AAMSU alleged that the state’s minorities have been deprived of basic amenities due to the non-availability of Aadhaar cards.
AAMSU also demanded establishing a university in the name of the 16th Century saint and cultural icon, Azan Pir, a Sainik School in the name of Ahom General Bagh Hazarika, and a campus of Aligarh Muslim University in Assam for the educational upliftment of members of the minority communities.
Referring to anti-Muslim violence in Tripura, the student body expressed hope that perpetrators of hate crimes should be dealt with strictly.
“The attack on minorities in Assam and other parts of India should also be strictly dealt with to forbid such hate crimes from being repeated again.”
Expressing concern over the alleged attacks on minority Hindus in Bangladesh, AAMSU requested the Prime Minister to ensure the safety and security of those people through diplomatic channels.