Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Monday said the Narendra Modi government would identify and remove “each and every infiltrator” from India before the 2024 Lok Sabha elections, PTI reported.

The minister, who addressed an election rally in Jharkhand, reiterated that the National Register of Citizens exercise would be conducted across the country. Shah had told Parliament last month about the government’s plan, saying it was only natural that the exercise would be repeated in Assam. In its election manifesto, the Bharatiya Janata Party has promised to conduct NRC in Jharkhand to rid the state of Bangladeshi “infiltrators”.

“Today, I want to tell you that before the 2024 polls the NRC will be conducted across the country and each and every infiltrator identified and expelled,” he said. “Rahul baba [Congress leader Rahul Gandhi] asks why we are implementing NRC, why we are expelling infiltrators, where will they go, what will they eat. Are these infiltrators his relatives? The BJP government will drive out each and every infiltrator from the country by 2024.”

In Assam, more than 19 lakh people were left out of the final list of the updated citizens’ database that was published on August 31. The appeals process in foreigners’ tribunals is going on at present.

The BJP president said uprooting terrorism, Maoism, and construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya were important election agenda along with local development projects.

“Congress leaders would tell the Supreme Court that there is no need for hearing the Ram Janmabhoomi case,” the BJP leader told the audience at the public meeting. “With your [people’s] backing, we submitted that it be taken forward, and the result is that the apex court has ruled that only a Ram temple will be built in Ayodhya.”

Assembly polls in Jharkhand are being held in five phases. Results will be announced on December 23.

Also read: Why Amit Shah’s promise to extend a pan-India NRC to Assam will not be easy

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