The Sikkim Democratic Front delegation, which had senior leaders and workers of the party, submitted a memorandum requesting exemption of Sikkim from the extension and enforcement of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 by implementing provisions of Article 371F of the Constitution of India.
Pawan Chamling along with his delegation of Sikkim Democratic Front, called on the Governor, Ganga Prasad at Raj Bhawan in Gangtok on Friday.
SDF spokesperson, Krishna Lepcha issued the following statement in the form of a press release,
“Pawan Chamling, on behalf of the SDF party and the people of Sikkim, briefed and submitted a memorandum requesting for special exemption for the state of Sikkim from the extension and enforcement of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 in order to safeguard and uphold the spirit laid down in Article 371F of the Constitution of India which is a special provision provided for the State of Sikkim in the Constitution.”
The release mentioned about other factors and fronts such as the social, economic, political, historical and the legal aspects with reference to Sikkim and Article 371F.
The ruling Sikkim Krantikari Morcha also voted against the Bill in the Lok Sabha while demanding an exemption for the state.
Union home minister Amit Shah had acknowledged the significance of Article 371F in Sikkim’s context and assured the Lok Sabha that the Act would not be extended to the state without the nod of the Assembly.
Local political parties and social organizations contend that mere verbal assurances not enough, exemptions should be in the form of an Act.
FORUM AGAINST CAA:
The SDF along with some parties and organizations which on Friday came together to form “Sikkim Against CAA” or SACAA.
Passang Sherpa, who was named the coordinator of the forum, said its single point agenda was to oppose the amended Citizenship Act.
The forum demanded the implementation of the Inner Line Permit (ILP) in the state. States with ILP regime in place have been exempted from the Act.
Some other contingents present in the forum are:
Sikkim Sangram Parishad, Sikkim unit of the Congress, Sikkim Republican Party, Hamro Sikkim Party, Sikkim Subject Committee, Limboo-Tamang Voluntary Committee, I AM 371F Campaign, Sikkim for Sikkimese, Sikkim Progressive Youth Forum and Unite for Sikkim.