Implement Citizenship Bill with caution

Implement Citizenship Bill with caution

Amit Shah Kolkata visit: Will pass Citizenship Amendment Bill, throw out intruders, says BJP chief

Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Tuesday said the Centre will implement the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill before bringing in the National Register of Citizens in West Bengal.

The move has positives and negatives. For years, refugees and infiltrators from Bangladesh or undocumented Muslims, have changed the demographic profile of Bengal; and other states to some extent. These undocumented people have been accommodated by Bengal for the purpose of creating a vote bank. Nothing more. Time has come to identify such people who have made India their home illegally.

Parties like the Trinamool Congress and the CPM have been soft on these infiltrators fearing election loss. But Shah’s move is to consolidate the Hindu votes in Bengal and elsewhere.

However, the move to weed out the undocumented Muslims should be done with abundant caution. In the name of the Citizenship Bill, genuine Muslims, who have been staying for years in Bengal, should not be targeted. There should be a foolproof mechanism to hear the affected people before the implementation of the clauses.

In fact, Shah reiterated that NRC will be implemented in all the states to deport “each and every infiltrator” in the country. Uttar Pradesh has already started the move in this direction.

“Here (in Bengal) TMC is misleading people about NRC. Mamata Banerjee is saying that Hindu refugees will be thrown out of the country. I have come here to assure all my refugee brothers that there is no need to worry as the central government will not force them out of the country.

“I want to assure all Hindu, Sikh, Jain, Buddhist and Christian refugees, that you will not be forced to leave India by the Centre. Don’t believe rumours. Before NRC, we will bring Citizenship Amendment Bill, which will ensure these people get Indian citizenship,” he said.

“Didi is saying there will be no NRC in Bengal. But we will identify each and every infiltrator and drive them out. When Mamata Banerjee was in the Opposition she had demanded that such infiltrators be driven out. Now when those infiltrators have become her vote bank, she does not want them to be removed. I want to remind Mamata didi of her speech on August 4 in 2005 when she had talked about the ouster of such intruders. But political ambitions should not prevail over national priorities,” Shah said.

All India Majlis-e-Ittehad-ul-Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief Asaduddin Owaisi took to Twitter to hit out at  Shah, saying, “The Home Minister is saying clearly that only undocumented Muslims will have to fear NRC, while others will get Indian citizenship @AmitShah I know you are allergic to it, but try reading the Constitution, FOR ONCE. Religion based citizenship is illegal and will be struck down.”

Owaisi must be heard and convinced. That is how democracy works. But then there should be no place for undocumented Muslims. They should return from where they came from

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