Citizenship refers to the rules for conferring national belonging, based on lineage (jus sanguinis) or territory (jus soli), while the right to political participation’ is a defining contour of citizenship. The infringement on the former coupled with mechanical recreation of history based on identity cleaving (Us before them; we vs they) is a fatal precedence. History tells that such schemes ripen ground for neo-Nazi apartheid state-reducing citizens to subjects by creating ‘imagined boundaries’. The contentious Citizenship Bill, passed by Lok Sabha on Tuesday, will grant citizenship to non-Muslim migrants from neighbouring countries.; The bill is a desperate attempt on part of BJP to change the ethnic mix in North-East by delimiting suffrage using religion; cordoning off Assam from Muslims (the ‘Jinnahs’ as Himanta B. Sarma of BJP puts). The subaltern cultural or secular underpinnings of Indian Constitution have been blatantly violated ensuing strong reactions and protests. The Citizenship Amendment Bill has been portrayed as discriminatory against Muslims and a means to transform demography in North East by melting it into mawkish emotive issue; a lachrymose oxymoron of promising citizenship based on structural exclusion and denial of identity. The choice being presented to Assam is in the conundrum of either/or i.e. choose Assam Accord or Jinnah’s Legacy. Only trouble, the Assam Accord is itself being violated; and no wonders, the bill is drawing fire from BJP allies in North-East; as many as 70 organizations have observed disgust day in Assam, violently protesting over the bill. Moreover, paranoid over inflicted threat to culture and linguistic identity in the bill, protestors in Assam are demanding exclusion of all migrants- mostly Bengalis-and safeguard of indigenous cultures. Assamese have even threatened ‘economic blockade’. The issue seems to have isolated BJP as allies snapped ties and Congress condemned the bill for dividing Assam along communal lines, a worst move by BJP for vote bank. Tweaking citizenship is no less than a step towards political victimization in a country wrapped with communal fault lines which emerged with a vengeance during past five years. The exponential rise of cow vigilantism and public lynching and worse, the criminal silence and sanction by society at large threaten the constitutional foundation and social integration. Such measures not only violate the internationally sanctioned safeguards like European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) 1950, the two key international covenants on Civil and Political Rights and on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (1966), as well as Delhi Pact 1950 to protect minorities. The current victimizing political measure is to worsen social cleavages; that not only dishonours fundamental rights in part 3 of Indian constitution but also evades article 13 which sanctions nullity to any law that violates fundamental right. Intense migration controls, contracting membership based on differentiated statuses and stratified rights advance civic stratification, a system of inequality based on the rights that may be granted or denied by the state. The’ us vs them’ paradigm based citizenship to legitimize inequalities is detrimental for prospects of peaceful coexistence within the spectrum of diversity-unity. Legitimizing a particular social class while disenchanting another, such political disposition would be divisive. ‘What is next in India?’ was the question asked by intelligentsia owing to appalling incidents of Hindu nationalism cross-cutting identity groups (lynching, distorting history, depicting Muslims as foreign invaders etc.). What would be next after the citizenship bill? Has India ordained upon itself the exclusion over inclusion? With imminent elections, the national conscious needs to self-reflex itself; continuing the current path of state sponsored ‘bad faith,’ as Sartre called, or embracing ‘human, all too human’ narrative. * Published in Daily Times, January 10th 2019.