Guwahati: As many as 70 organisations in Assam protesting against the proposed Citizenship (Amendment) Bill 2016, have decided to approach the Supreme Court to challenge the government recent notifications on citizenship rules.

The Bill has sparked large-scale protests in the state since it will nullify the Assam Accord. The Assam Accord lays down that the foreign nationals would be identified and expelled from the state irrespective of religion. Besides, the current update of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) will also be rendered meaningless if a section of illegal migrants, who are left out of the list, are granted citizenship.

The battle against these rules had begun early in 2016 with the AASU approaching the apex court, which, refused to admit a petition. Subsequently, the students’ organisation decided to ‘intervene’ in another case being heard by the court on the same issue which has been referred to a constitution bench.

“Our petition was dismissed by the Supreme Court, which is why we decided to intervene in the other cases. Since 2016, the AASU has filed petitions in three cases against these notifications on the citizenship rules including one that has been referred to a constitution bench,” explained AASU adviser Samujjal Bhattacharyya.

On September 7, 2015, the Centre issued two gazette notifications – Foreigners (Amendment) Order, 2015 and the Passport (Entry into India) Amendment Rules, 2015 – to exempt from the application of Foreigners Act, 1946 six non-Muslim minority communities from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan who were compelled to seek shelter in India due to religious persecution or fear of religious persecution and entered the country till December 31, 2014. These communities are Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians.

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