WSF seeks UN’s intervention over ‘unjust’ CAA legislation

DIMAPUR, MARCH 23 (MExN): Wesean Student Federation, a newly formed body, has sought the intervention of the United Nations on the issue of Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) recently enacted by the Government of India. 

In a representation addressed to the Secretary General, UN and members of the United Nations Indigenous Peoples Forum (UNIPF), the Federation termed the CAA as a discriminatory and unjust piece of legislation which poses a grave threat to the sovereignty, dignity, and rights of the indigenous peoples of Wesea. 

Under the guise of granting citizenship to undocumented migrants from neighboring countries, the Indian government seeks to further marginalize and disenfranchise the indigenous populations of our region, the Federation alleged. 

“As indigenous peoples, we have endured centuries of colonization, oppression, and displacement. Our lands have been plundered, our cultures have been eroded, and our rights have been trampled upon by colonial powers and their successors. The passage of the CAA is yet another chapter in this long history of injustice, a cruel reminder of the ongoing struggle we face to assert our sovereignty and protect our way of life,” the Federation stated. 

Calling upon the international community to stand in solidarity against this flagrant violation of rights, the Federation has urged the United Nations Indigenous Peoples Forum to lend its support to their cause and to advocate on behalf of the indigenous peoples of Wesea. 

“The time for action is now. The future of our communities hangs in the balance, and the world must heed our call for justice,” it added.

According to a separate press statement, Wesean Student Federation, a new initiative aimed at addressing the pressing issues faced by Weseans in the Northeast region and beyond was established on March 17, 2024. 

It informed that the Federation has been formed in response to the growing disillusionment among Wesean students with the extreme ethno-nationalist behavior exhibited by some other student groups in the Northeast. 

It also expressed disappointment by the perceived lack of action taken by existing Northeast student unions, including the Northeast Student Union (NESU), in addressing the concerns of Weseans. Despite the recent abolishment of the Free Movement Regime (FMR) between India and Myanmar, NESU has remained silent on the issue, further underscoring the need for a dedicated platform like the WSF to advocate for our rights and interests, it alleged. 

One of its key objectives is to connect with Weseans who are divided beyond the Indian border, including those in Bangladesh and Myanmar. “We recognize the shared challenges and aspirations of Weseans across borders and believe that by coming together; we can amplify our voices and work towards common goals more effectively,” the press statement read.