Guwahati: Prime Minister Narendra Modi who is on a two-day visit to the Northeast slammed the Congress saying the party had zero respect for Assam’s culture. Amping the attack, PM Modi said that Congress did not have the will to implement important parts of the Assam Accord.

Asserting there has been an upbeat change in the state’s environment, PM Modi added that during Congress rule, the headlines from the Northeast indicated sheer neglect and apathy but at present, the headlines now reflect positivity and development.

“The BJP is committed to implementing the 36-year old Assam Accord and a committee set up on the implementation of its Clause 6 is a step in that direction”, PM Modi said.

The BJP-led NDA government is committed to protecting the language, culture, resources, hopes and aspirations of the people of Assam and northeast, he added. (Also Read: Arunachal Part of India, Leaders Will go There: MEA in Response to China Statement on PM Modi’s Visit)

The Assam Accord (1985) was a Memorandum of Settlement (MoS) signed between representatives of the government and the leaders of the Assam Movement in Delhi on August 15, 1985. A six-year agitation demanding identification and deportation of illegal immigrants was launched by the All Assam Students’ Union (AASU) in 1979 which later culminated with the signing of the Assam Accord.

The accord brought an end to the Assam Movement and paved the way for the leaders of the agitation to form a political party and form a government in the state of Assam soon after.

Speaking on the sensitive citizenship bill issue, PM Modi assured the people of Assam and the northeast that the bill will in no way cause harm to their interests. He was addressing a public rally here in the assembly constituency of Assam health minister and BJP-led NEDA convener Himata Biswa Sarma.

“It is a national commitment to the people of the northeast that they will not be harmed in any way and citizenship will be only granted after due investigation and recommendation of the state governments,” PM Modi said.

Stating there is a difference between ‘those who forcibly enter the country and those who were forced to flee their homes to save their lives due to their faith’, PM Modi said people must understand that the two are not the same.

“We have committed to provide shelter to those who are minorities in neighbouring countries and had to leave everything due to the atrocities inflicted on them. They have come to our country and embraced the idea and ethos of Mother India,” he said.