Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Tuesday said the central government will implement the National Register of Citizens in West Bengal, but added that the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill would be passed first to provide citizenship to all Hindu, Sikh, Jain and Buddhist refugees, PTI reported. This is his first visit to West Bengal as a Union minister. Shah made the remarks at an event called NRC-Jagran Abhiyan in the state’s capital Kolkata.
Shah also appeared to assert that the NRC would be implemented in the state. “Didi (West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee) is saying she will not let NRC happen in West Bengal,” Times Now quoted him as saying. “But, I am assuring you that each and every infiltrator in India will be shown the door.”
He accused Mamata Banerjee of spreading panic about NRC and alleged that she was lying that the implementation of NRC would eliminate Hindu refugees from Bangladesh, according to Hindustan Times.
“People of Bengal are being misled about the NRC. I assure all Hindu, Buddhist, Sikh, Jain refugees they won’t have to leave the country, they will get Indian citizenship and enjoy all the rights of an Indian national.”
His comments have come after reports of multiple deaths in Bengal relating to panic over the NRC possibly being implemented there.
The home minister highlighted that the Bharatiya Janata Party-led coalition at the Centre had introduced the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill in the Rajya Sabha in 2016, but the Trinamool Congress did not allow it to pass. Shah said the bill would provide citizenship to those belonging to minority communities from neighbouring nations.
The BJP president also lauded Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s decision to revoke Jammu and Kashmir’s special Constitutional status. He said that the Centre’s August 5 order will ensure that the state is completely integrated into India.
Shah also referred to Jan Sangh Founder Syama Prasad Mookerjee and said Modi had paid a tribute to him by revoking Kashmir’s special status. “They are trying to say the BJP is an outsider party in Bengal, that it doesn’t have anything to do with Bengal,” he said, according to NDTV. “When entire Bengal was about to go to Pakistan, Syama Prasad Mookerjee had partition done and kept West Bengal for us.”
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