Kolkata

Will pass resolution in Assembly against CAA: Mamata

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee addressing TMC Chhatra Parshad (TMC students wing) students during their protest dharma against CAA, NPR and NRC in Kolkata, on January 15, 2020.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee addressing TMC Chhatra Parshad (TMC students wing) students during their protest dharma against CAA, NPR and NRC in Kolkata, on January 15, 2020.   | Photo Credit: PTI

She urges Opposition ruled States, Northeast to reject NPR, terms it a “dangerous game”

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday took protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act ( CAA) a step further by announcing that her government would pass a resolution against the new law in the Assembly. She described the National Population Register (NPR) exercise as a “dangerous game and totally related to National Register of Citizens (NRC)”.

“We have also passed a resolution against the NRC three months ago. We will pass a resolution against the CAA also within three to four days,” she said.

The announcement assumes significance as the State government has rejected the offer of the Left and the Congress to bring an anti-CAA resolution in the legislature. The Trinamool Congress government has maintained it was first in the country to pass a resolution against the NRC in the Assembly in September 2019. However, after the CPI(M)-led Left Democratic Front (LDF) government in Kerala and the Congress-ruled Punjab passed resolutions in their Assemblies demanding the scrapping of the CAA, the Trinamool government decided to follow suit. 

Leader of the Opposition and Congress MLA Abdul Mannan welcomed the move to bring in a House resolution but raised the question of why did the Trinamool not listen to the proposal made by the Left and the Congress only a few days ago when the House was in session.

Speaking to media persons at the Kolkata airport, she urged all the States ruled by non-BJP parties as well as the States in the Northeast that are ruled by the BJP not to participate in the NPR.

“I will appeal to all the northeastern States as well as the Opposition ruled States to read the law properly before taking any decision on the NPR. I will request them not to participate in it,” she said. 

Ms. Banerjee, who did not send a representative of her government to participate in a last week meeting called by the Centre on the the NPR and Census, raised the question of why columns of providing the date of birth of parents should be there in the NPR form “if they are not mandatory”.

“Suppose in the NPR there is a column saying that give your father's date of birth or birth certificate or mother’s date of birth or birth certificate. But when the States raised objection, they [Centre] said it is not mandatory. If it is not mandatory then why it exists on paper,” she asked. People who would not fill such columns could be excluded, she said.

Later in the day, while addressing a public rally at Darjeeling, she said that if a “column in someone mark sheet is left blank then it means that the person has failed”. 

“So there are apprehensions. First they have to withdraw it. The NPR is a very dangerous game and it is totally related to the NRC,” she said. 

When asked about a meeting of Opposition parties, she said the Chief Ministers of these parties could meet anywhere, including in Kolkata. “It will depend on the time. Now we have Saraswati Puja and Republic Day, everyone will be busy.”

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Printable version | Feb 17, 2020 10:27:11 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kolkata/mamata-asks-opposition-ruled-states-northeast-to-reject-npr/article30606531.ece

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