National

Shutdown in Nagaland over Citizenship Bill; vehicular traffic in 11 districts suspended

Normal life came to standstill in Nagaland on Monday as a dawn-to-dusk shutdown called in protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, evoked total response. Shops, business establishments and educational institutions remained closed and vehicular traffic in all 11 districts was suspended.The busy roads in state capital Kohima and the commercial town of Dimapur wore a deserted look despite the Nagaland government's appeal to reconsider the shutdown."There is no report of any untoward incident from any part of the state. The shutdown has brought life to a standstill," a police official said.

The coordination committee of tribal hohos (associations), civil society organisations, various committees and mass-based organisations under the aegis of the Nagaland Gaon Burhas Federation (NGBF) said that the strike has been called to protest the planned passage of the Bill in the Rajya Sabha.The opposition Naga People's Front has backed the shutdown.
Nagaland Chief Secretary and Finance Commissioner Temjen Toy said the state government will propose the adoption of a resolution to oppose the Bill in the forthcoming Budget session scheduled to be held on February 21, as decided during the January 31 consultative meeting held in Dimapur.The Nagaland cabinet has rejected the Bill which was passed in the Lok Sabha on January 8.

Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio has said that the state government, which represents the will and desire of the people, remains opposed to the Bill that seeks to remove hurdles for eligible migrants from six minority groups from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan in getting Indian citizenship.He also promised that his government would leave no stone unturned to constantly protect the rights and privileges of the people.

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