Q: The Naga Christians seem to be worried about granting citizenship to nonMuslims from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan; why? Does this issue also relate to religion?
A: See, it is for the Nagas to comment on an issue that concerns them. We in Mizoram are totally against Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, which the Centre wants to pass in Parliament. They want to grant Indian citizenship to immigrants belonging to six persecuted non-Muslim communities from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan. The thousands of Hindus and Buddhists who will get citizenship will soon outnumber the local people. They say that these people are persecuted in those countries and so are being given shelter here. This will change the whole nature of the whole North-East, not only ethnically but also religiously. The tribals will be pushed out of their lands and they will become aliens in their own land. This move is seen here as politically motivated, and hence unacceptable. It appears that, far from being a genuinely humanitarian gesture, it is a shrewd political move. All the local parties and people are united on this issue; they may sever relations with BJP on this account.
Bp Stephen Rotluanga