KCR defends opposition to CAA, NPR, NRC

MIM and Congress support resolution

Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao has defended the government’s opposition to the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) claiming that the Act is considered as prelude to the National Population Register (NPR) and National Register of Citizens (NRC).

The exercise on the NPR which commenced during former Prime Minister late Atal Behari Vajpayee in 2003 was abandoned later in 2011 as it was considered as a failed experiment. The previous UPA government had said on the floor of Parliament that the programme was failure as the document base was poor especially in the rural areas. The Chief Minister, who moved a resolution against the CAA, NPR and NRC in the Legislative Assembly, advised the Centre against moving ahead with the exercise in haste as isolation of a particular section was not in the interests of the country.

The exercise on CAA and related issued had attracted national and international attention and brought disrepute to the country. “What will be left of the image of the country internationally?” he questioned adding it was not just an issue for particular communities, but was the one concerning social fabric of the country.

He pointed out that while Union Home Minister Amit Shah repeatedly claimed that there was no proposal for taking up the NRC exercise in the country and the Home Ministry’s annual report made it crystal clear that NPR was the first step towards preparation of NRC. “How will people believe? Why should there be double standards on the issue?” he asked.

‘Seeking clarification’

The Chief Minister said the government was seeking clarification on the apprehensions that were prevailing among the people and that triggering panic among the marginal and vulnerable sections was “unwarranted”. The government was prepared to cooperate with the Centre if it was prepared to come up with a new formula that was acceptable to all.

He faulted the comments like “goli maro” made by the BJP members on those agitating against the CAA, NPR and NRC and said such comments were uncalled for and the civilized society would not tolerate such derisive remarks.

Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen floor leader Akbaruddin Owaisi said the exercise was aimed at dividing and weakening the country and it was not just against Muslims, but was against the poor, illiterate and vulnerable sections cutting across the caste and religious lines. “The Centre wants to make non-citizens as citizens of the country and citizens as non-citizens in the name of CAA and related exercise,” he alleged.

No legal backing

He lamented that several innocent people were killed in the aftermath of announcement of the exercise on CAA, NPR and NRC claiming that there was no scope for violence had the Centre not brought forth the CAA, NPR and NRC. People were being separated and a sense of hatred was being created in the name of the exercise which could turn out to be a crushing blow to Dalits, tribes and other vulnerable sections.

He urged the Chief Minister to stay the process of NPR which was expected to be taken up along with the Census work as NPR and NRC did not have statutory or legal backing. The rules of NPR enable people to object the inclusion of names in the register and this could in turn result in the names of people included in the doubtful list. “Those in the doubtful category will have to survive at the mercy of those in power,” he said.

Congress floor leader Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka said the Centre’s moves were against the Constitution and the party welcomed the resolution introduced in the Assembly. But mere introduction of the resolution would not suffice and the government should issue specific orders preventing the employees from taking up NPR work. “The issue should be taken to its logical end. The government should issue specific orders on the lines of Kerala,” he said.

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Printable version | May 27, 2020 3:15:24 AM |

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