Imphal Feb 13 (IANS) The lapsing of the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 as it was not cleared by the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday “is a victory of the people”.
This was stated by Manipur Chief Minister N. Biren who has been camping in Delhi along with representatives of nine political parties to urge Central leaders not to pass the contentious Bill. He added that now the government and the people should pay attention to the developmental works.
Though some northeastern states have been agitating against the Bill, the most strident protests were seen in Manipur. To maintain law and order, the government had clamped indefinite curfew in Imphal east and Imphal west districts on Monday night.
However, it had little impact as thousands of men and women gathered to take out torchlight processions and a naked protest was also staged by eight youth.
On Tuesday night, at least 17 persons were injured when police fired tear gas shells and mock bombs to disperse the protesters here.
Biren said that the Bill was allowed to lapse as the Prime Minister, Home Minister and Amit Shah knew the sentiments of the people.
He also tendered an apology to the people for imposing the curfew to maintain law and order and protect precious lives. He said that the government had instructed the authorities to lift the curfew and restore Internet connections soon after the Bill lapsed in the Rajya Sabha.
Congressmen led by CLP leader Okram Ibobi have been staging protests in Delhi against the attempt to pass the controversial Bill.
The temporary office of the BJP near the Manipur University campus here was the target of the people on Tuesday night. On instructions from the government, it was transformed on Wednesday into a fort with barbed wire fencing to ward off protesters.
Security in the houses of BJP leaders and functionaries was tightened.
Officials said that soon after the lifting of curfew, women vendors started selling essential commodities in the city markets. Demanding withdrawal of the Bill, most of the women vendors had been sleeping in the markets, refusing to go home.