TODAY -

Consequences of the Citizenship Amendment Bill, 2016 in Manipur

Oinam Nabakishore Singh *

 Citizenship Amendment Bill 2016 : Blockade at Indo-Burma Road (Moirangkom - Canchipur)  :: 7th February 2019
CAB 2016 : Blockade at Indo-Burma Road on 7th February 2019 :: Pix - Shankar Khangembam



During a sit-in protest organized by Film Forum, Manipur against the Citizenship Amendment Bill, 2016(CAB in short) on 29th January, 2019 at Imphal, Shri Aribam Shyam Sharma, a noted filmmaker and Padmashri said, “ In 1947, I sang Jana Gana Mana and Vande Mataram with delight. Later, on 15th August too, we sang these national songs. When the Citizenship Amendment Bill is being passed, suddenly, I get scared. What is our future? Is there any future for Manipuris ? This becomes an important question.”

Echoing similar sentiments, Shri Athouba, General Secretary of United Committee, Manipur(UCM) during a discussion on Impact TV on 29th January, 2019 said, “At last, I am making an appeal. Manipur People against Citizenship Amendment Bill(MANPCAB) feel that we, the indigenous people of the north-east, are on the brink of extinction. People of Manipur should rise now; when we launch an agitation, people should not hesitate in joining us. Unitedly, we should try to save Manipur”.

Several other civil society organizations and student bodies in Manipur have been continuously expressing their fear of marginalization of Manipuris as a result of passing of Citizenship Amendment Bill.

After the CAB is passed by the Rajya Sabha and assent from the President of India is obtained, the new law will renderillegal immigrants who are Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan, eligible to become Indian citizenship. The main argument of Government of India is that such people have come to India as they were persecuted in these three countries.

Through the amendment mentioned herein, the minimum number of years of residence in India by illegal migrants from these three countriesto be eligible for seeking citizenship is sought to be relaxed from 11 years to 6 years.What are the possible consequences and impact on Manipur on account of enactment of the Citizenship Amendment Bill, 2016(CAB in short) and grant of Indian citizenship to a huge number of illegal Hindu migrants to India, mainly from Bangladesh?

Before coming to the prediction of possible consequences of grant of citizenship of India through the amendment, it may be worthwhile to look at the figures of migration of Hindus from Bangladesh to India. We may ignore the migration of Hindus from Pakistan and Afghanistan to India as it is quite unlikely that they would come all the way to Manipur in search of economic opportunities.

After the British left India in 1947, the country was divided into mainly Hindu country called India and Muslin Pakistan comprising of West and East Pakistan(present Bangladesh after liberation). It was estimated that 3 million Hindu Bengalis migrated from East Pakistan to India in 1947 alone to live mostly in West Bengal and other cities of India.After partition, there have been many waves of migration of Bengali Hindusto India due to atrocities and economic reasons.

In 1950, it is estimated that a further one million refugees crossed into West Bengal, particularly in the aftermath of 1950 Barisal riots and Noakhali riots. Another major influx into India came in 1971 during the Bangladesh Liberation War, when Hindu refugees escaped systematic mass killings, rapes, lootings and arson.

It is estimated that around 10 million East Bengali refugees entered India during the early months of the war, of whom 1.5 million may have stayed back after Bangladesh became independent. Influx of illegal migrants from Bangladesh continued through the porous border between Bangladesh and India. The National Register of Citizens in Assam recorded about 40 lakhs illegal immigrants in that State. It is a common knowledge that Bangladesh immigrants-Hindus as well Muslims have settled in many parts of the North East including Manipur.

On passing of the CAB by the Rajya Sabha, all illegal Hindu migrants, who completed 6 years of residence in India before 31st December, 2014 would be eligible and become citizens of India. They are mainly concentrated in the North-East India and West Bengal even though they are found in big cities like Delhi, Mumbai, etc.

Once Indian citizenship is acquired through the amendment, they will be at par with any other citizen of India in terms of protection granted by the Constitution of India, welfare benefits of several schemes of the Union Government and State Governments where they live and political rights of voting and contesting election.

Although the Citizenship Amendment Bill is meant for illegal immigrants belonging to the six religions of Hindu, Sikhs, Buddhism, Parsi, Christians, and Jains, many Muslim migrants may seek Indian citizenship by converting to one of these religions. Many Hindus in Pakistan converted to Muslim to continue to live there after partition as the losses and suffering to be incurred on leaving Pakistan for India after partition was enormous.

In Manipur, we have seen the election of Shri Kishore Thapa , a person of Nepal origin and Ashab Uddin, a person believed to be from Bangladesh,to the State Assembly of Manipur. With continuous migration of outsiders and immigrants from Bangladesh and Myanmar, political rights of indigenous people of Manipur will be compromised over a period of time. This fact is already established in Tripura, where indigenous people now constitutes about 31 percent of the total population due to influx of people from neighbouring Bangladesh during the partition and India Pakistan war of 1971 for liberation of Bangladesh.

From economic point of view, the indigenous people are going to lose to migrants on many counts. Traditionally, migrants are much more hardworking and willing to do any kind of odd job in order to survive. Further, culturally, migrants anywhere in the world have better savings habits and over a period of time, important assets of indigenous people will get transferred to migrants.

There are reports of alienation of land of local people of Assam to migrants on a large scale. Gradually, the Assamese in their own land became landless. The Telegraph newspaper reported on 14th May, 2018-A section of “corrupt” revenue department officials in Assam are helping in illegal transfer of indigenous people’s agriculture land to non-indigenous traders and “illegal migrants” from Bangladesh for non-agricultural use, says a committee on land rights headed by former chief election commissioner H S Brahma. Same thing will happen in Manipur when migrants settle down in Manipur.

The fear of indigenous people of Manipur losing their distinct identity and language when migrants overwhelm them is also not without any basis. Intermarriage is the most common phenomenon when migrants live in the neighbourhood of local population. Culture will be constantly under threat as it will be contaminated with the way of life and many other aspects of migrants.

Any community and society, proud of its culture and identity, will justifiably resist any attempt to dilute their existence by a new force. The strong voice of resentment and resistance by the student bodies, civil society organizations and most of the political parties in Manipur except the ruling party is not without valid grounds. It is to be seen if the voice of dissent and apprehension of the people of Manipur is heard by the Union Government.


Views expressed are personal


* Oinam Nabakishore Singh wrote this article for The Sangai Express
This article was webcasted on February 09 2019.



* Comments posted by users in this discussion thread and other parts of this site are opinions of the individuals posting them (whose user ID is displayed alongside) and not the views of e-pao.net. We strongly recommend that users exercise responsibility, sensitivity and caution over language while writing your opinions which will be seen and read by other users. Please read a complete Guideline on using comments on this website.




LATEST IN E-PAO.NET
  • Nongkhrang Ehanba @Lilong #1 : Gallery
  • RS adjourned without CAB: What now? #1
  • Indie films: Loktak Lairembee & Soni #1
  • Inner Line Permit (ILP) Demand :: Timeline
  • Mother language is a carrier of values...
  • 71st Zomi Namni at Singhat
  • The Rohingya Crisis : Paper
  • Everyone shows concerns on pollution but..
  • HSLC exams underway
  • RN Ravi arriving Nagaland to brief hohos
  • More powers under CrPC to Assam Rifles
  • Traditional Raas Dance #1: Gallery
  • Boinaoton, Achamba :: eMing
  • Schemes of Panchayati Raj #1
  • Ego that pushes one out of the rapport
  • Meitei in Scheduled Tribe list, what ?
  • Patriotic Youth of DBC with the Nation
  • RPL trainees of Meghalaya
  • Fate of Manipur
  • No over the top glee at Meghalaya
  • Symbolism in the Tribal Art #3
  • Zasigi coIroL :: Seireng
  • CAB: Imphal I/W [12 Feb] #3: Gallery
  • Overboard 2018: Skateboarding competition
  • Palliative care as career option
  • Importance of health screenings for women
  • Intimidating media: Think before you lift
  • ST demand for Meiteis hotting up
  • Rajkumar Singhajit : Tagore Award 2014
  • Eyek Tamba :: Learn Manipuri script
  • CAB: Khwairamband [10 Feb] #2: Gallery
  • Tribes India [Exhibition] #3 : Gallery
  • 'The Wishess' wins 1st NE Multimedia
  • Why Manipur is a self-alienated society ?
  • Antibiotic mismanagement- sleeping bomb
  • Rejoinder to NDPP :: NPF
  • The unwanted season for no good reason
  • 8 in the race for Cong ticket in Inner PC
  • Mukna - Indigenous Games : Gallery
  • Internet shutdown- only solution for govt ?
  • Keisham Priyokumar's short stories? #2
  • Revive Tabanglong Village
  • Without a Womb :: Poem
  • RPL trainees of Ziro, Arunachal Pradesh
  • CAB award goes to CM ?
  • Demand release of Student Leader
  • Veewom's arrest: mockery of rule of law
  • Arduino & Raspberry-Pi workshop at ADBU
  • Lui-ngai-ni @Senapati #1: Gallery
  • Republic Day - Tableaux : Gallery
  • Marriage : Zeliangrongs & Tais #1
  • My Story :: Poem
  • Naga Peace Process :: News Timeline
  • Quest for Federalism in Myanmar : Paper
  • Gatekeeper's management mantra
  • From Democracy to Dictatorial govt
  • Fresh twist to Citizenship Bill
  • Dzukou Valley, Senapati : Gallery
  • Demand for ILP :: Articles/Photos...
  • Rules of the Road at Silicon Valley
  • What is a school meant for ?
  • Why meiteis should not be ST #3
  • Release Thokchom Veewom - II
  • Release Thokchom Veewom - I
  • Face scrubs to avoid dirt & dullness
  • SM4E Awards 2019 : Nomination open
  • After effect of CAB collapse
  • Need to look beyond CAB
  • Panel seeks support to save NH
  • Amuktang-Ga Haikho #2 : eRang
  • Exam Centre allocation for HSLC 2019
  • 3rd World Bamboo Workshop #2 : Gallery
  • Cry of a Dying River - 65 :: Poem
  • DIPR facts on Census confuse Pangals
  • Manipur Tourism: Global Mice Congress
  • Coping up with examination stresses
  • On Govt inability to present CAB
  • Breather for the North East
  • Henjunaha #2 :: Funga Wari
  • Sangai Chef: Season 1 : Gallery
  • CAB: Imphal I/W [12 Feb] #2: Gallery
  • Lui-Ngai-Ni -Naga Seed Sowing Fest
  • Different opinions on CAB 2016
  • Change of B Voc Examination Schedule
  • Nagaland MP will vote against CAB
  • Overshadowing issues by CAB
  • RS adjourned till February 13
  • CAB: Imphal I/W [12 Feb] #1: Gallery
  • CAB: Blockade [7 Feb] #2: Gallery
  • Keisham Priyokumar's short stories? #1
  • Just a beautiful lie :: Poem
  • World Wetlands Day 2019
  • Protests against Union HRD Ministry
  • 'PDA trying to confuse Naga people'
  • The 'ban' of Internet
  • Setting date with February 12, 2019
  • NSCN (I-M) elects new leaders
  • Scientific Knowledge in Manuscript
  • Poppy destruction @CCpur : Gallery
  • Kishorechand Wangkhem's case
  • 70th Indian Republic Day #3 : Gallery
  • Hinduism and Indianess
  • CAB: Maharaj & Xenophobia :: WJ
  • Deciphering a laboratory test report
  • Stop discrimination against women
  • The falls of protracted leader
  • More than hinting CAB will be tabled
  • CAB: Khwairamband [10 Feb] #1: Gallery
  • Gaan-Ngai @Majorkhul #2 : Gallery
  • Human trafficking at Moreh
  • Why meiteis should not be ST #2
  • The Dark Light :: Poem
  • Exclusion of Pvt Teachers from HSLC
  • Pan Meetei met Ex Dy CM
  • NSS special camp 2019 concluded
  • NE to Bangkok flight from March
  • CAB: Khwairamband [9 Feb] : Gallery
  • Thamoise Foidattuna :: e-pao Radio
  • CAB Meira Rally #4 [30 Jan] : Gallery
  • Prof T Kameshwar: Reminiscence
  • Bamboo Cooking Competition: Final Day
  • Tips for healthier skin this winter
  • Sincerity matters
  • Awaiting final pact with NSCN (IM)
  • CAB: Blockade [7 Feb] #1: Gallery
  • 3rd World Bamboo Workshop #1 : Gallery
  • The panic radiated at War-Torn PAD
  • NE- Socio-Economic Development: Book
  • CAB- Consequences in Manipur
  • [ST] Demand for Constitutional Safeguard
  • 'ArP to observe Black Day during PM visit'
  • CAB date with RS on Feb 12 ?
  • Check Post (ICP) @ Moreh : Gallery
  • Tribes India [Exhibition] #2 : Gallery
  • Citizenship Bill, 2016: What to do now #4
  • It's a privilege to be a Rongmei
  • A Saviour Of My Own :: Poem
  • North East Startup Summit 2019
  • Budget : Full, half or quarter ?
  • BJP shows no concern for NE states
  • Mission schools under threat again
  • CAB : Blockade @Tiddim [6 Feb] : Gallery
  • Dolaithabi Barrage: Concealing Facts
  • 70th Indian Republic Day #2 : Gallery
  • Marketing Associates @ PiCiDi Systems
  • CAB, Political Parties and Manipur
  • The Novels Of BM Maisnamba #2
  • Employment in non-Govt sectors in Manipur
  • The board exam festival
  • NE voice on CAB: no worry for the BJP
  • Alienating natives & embracing foreigners
  • Henjunaha #1 :: Funga Wari
  • Movement against Citizenship Bill in NE
  • Bamboo Cooking Competition: Day 1 Report
  • Konthoujam Maikel (Painter) :: Profile
  • CAB Meira Rally #3 [30 Jan] : Gallery
  • Business as usual will fail on cancer control
  • Citizenship Bill: Thinking with ethics
  • STDCM reasserts Demand for ST
  • Nepal to SE Asia: Trafficking via Moreh
  • Symbolism in the Tribal Art #2
  • Aribam Syam return Padmashree to Govt
  • Cry of a Dying River - 64 :: Poem
  • Impact of AI and Robotics on Society
  • New MSAD Executive term 2019
  • Rejoinder from Shurhozelie Liezietsu -Feb 3
  • Festival to promote NE trade, tourism
  • Onetwo Okram : Singer- Profile :: eRang
  • CAB : Film Forum Protest : Gallery
  • Cultural: Republic Day #1: Gallery
  • Why Manipuri people oppose CAB? #2
  • Noting anti-CAB stand of NPP, NPF
  • CAB Gen Strike #1 [31 Jan] : Gallery
  • Match: 4th Women's Polo #3: Gallery
  • Citizenship Bill, 2016: What to do now #3
  • Truth of Manipur is inherent in nature
  • JRF required at IBSD, Imphal
  • Imoinu Erat Thouni #3 : Gallery
  • February Calendar for Year 2019 :: Tools
  • CAB Meira Rally #2 [30 Jan] : Gallery
  • The Novels Of BM Maisnamba #1
  • Screen time, effect on speech & language
  • Trainees Certificate of Lunglei, Mizoram
  • ST: Unfounded fear psychosis being spread
  • CAB Meira Rally #1 [30 Jan] : Gallery
  • CAB Protest #1 [29 Jan] : Gallery
  • Fellowship Meet of Maring Naga
  • Legal Awareness for Women leaders
  • Flowers for beauty
  • Opposing ST demand of STDCM
  • Gaan-Ngai @Namthanlong : Gallery
  • Why Manipuri people oppose CAB? #1
  • Citizenship Bill, 2016: What to do now #2
  • Oinam Shilla : Society Development Award
  • MIK (Manipuri in Kolkata) : Gallery
  • Match: 4th Women's Polo #2: Gallery
  • Why shouldn't Meitei be included in ST
  • Combing Operation @Hatta : Gallery
  • Laishram Bombayla : Padma Shri Award
  • Maisnam Renuka (Painter) : Profile
  • Thank You Note: Khumukcham Sanjita
  • Gaan-Ngai - festival of Kabui #2
  • Imoinu Erat Thouni #2 : Gallery
  • Rongmei and Kabui are one
  • Rani Khidir : Kalaritu (Laiyekpa) : Profile
  • Match: 4th Women's Polo #1: Gallery
  • Ranjit Ningthouja : Profile of a playwright
  • Imoinu Erat Thouni #1 : Gallery
  • Dr Thokchom Asha: Teacher Award
  • Purnima Ngangom (Printmaker) :: Profile
  • The Killing Fields 2013-18 : News Timeline
  • New Year picnic at Sekmai #2: Gallery
  • Manipuri Calendar for 2019 : Download
  • Featured Front Page Photo 2018 #6: Gallery
  • Irengbam Bedamani - Actress :: eRang
  • List of Restricted Holidays for 2019
  • List of Public Holidays for 2019
  • List of General Holidays for 2019
  • Fabrics of Bangladeshi Manipuri: Download
  • Old Manipuri Movie #1 :: eRang Classic
  • SPONSORED ADS