New Delhi: Following days of protests, curfew was lifted from Guwahati on Tuesday morning. The Dibrugarh authorities, too, relaxed the curfew in the district from 6 AM to 8 PM. The decision to this effect was taken by state Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal after holding a meeting to review the law and order situation in the state. “It has been decided to lift the curfew completely in Guwahati from 6 AM on Tuesday,” a statement from the CMO said on Tuesday. Internet services in Howrah district in West Bengal will remain suspended till 5 PM on Tuesday.
Both Assam and West Bengal witnessed violent protests following the passage of the Citizenship Amendment Act in Parliament. Assam has witnessed one of the worst violent protests by the public in its history with three rail stations, a post office, a bank, a bus terminus, shops, dozens of vehicles and many other public properties being set ablaze or damaged. Five persons, including four in firing by security forces, have lost their lives since Wednesday.
Amid appeals for maintaining calm and peace from ministers, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, academics and activists are taking the legal route to fight the Act.
Activists Harsh Mander, Aruna Roy, Nikhil Dey, historian Irfan Habib, economist Prabhat Patnaik and some organisations on Monday approached the Supreme Court challenging the constitutional validity of Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 and sought direction to strike it down. The plea filed through advocate Prashant Bhushan sought direction to declare the Act as unconstitutional and illegal.
“These notifications and the Amendment Act are unconstitutional as they are discriminatory and violate the right to equality of all persons under the constitutional scheme. They are discriminatory towards illegal migrants from other countries in the neighbourhood of India apart from the three countries as well as discriminatory towards other minority communities such as Muslims, Jews, Ahmadiyas or Atheists who do not identify with a religious group,” the plea said.
(With Agency Inputs)