Actor Rajinikanth on Wednesday said that the Opposition parties were misleading the public about the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA). Rajinikanth's comments come weeks after widespread protests broke out across India against the CAA, National Register of Citizens (NRC) and National Population Register (NPR).
Speaking to reporters, Rajinikanth said that the NPR “very essential”. “The Congress has done it in 2010 and also it was done in 2015. It needs to be done to identify those who are Indians/who are foreigners -- which country they are from. Shouldn’t we know this? It is very, very essential and it has to be done. I don’t know what problem others have with this,” he said.
Rajinikanth also cited the Central government’s assurances about the CAA -- that it would not affect Indian citizens in anyway. “It is about giving citizenships to people who have come from neighbouring countries. A big scare has been created that Muslims will be affected. How will it affect Indian Muslims? The Muslims in India decided to stay back here during Partition stating that India is their land and that they will live and die here. How can they be sent out? If something like that happens, I will be the first one to speak out,” he said.
Rajinikanth further said that a few political parties are instigating these protests for political gain. “Some religious gurus are also supporting these efforts. This is very wrong,” he said. He also appealed to the students who have been protesting across India to understand and comprehend the issues around CAA, NRC and NPR. “Please do proper research on the subject, ask your parents and professors about this issue and then protest. Otherwise, political leaders will use you. Nobody knows how police will react. If an FIR is lodged, then it will become an issue in your life,” he said.