VHP bats for countrywide NRC

New Delhi: The Vishwa Hindi Parishad (VHP) on Thursday called for rolling out the National Register of Citizens at least in the states where the chief ministers have made a demand for its implementation.

VHP spokesperson Surendra Jain also advocated early passage of the Citizenship Amendment Bill in Parliament to address the concerns and the worries being raised by several political and social outfits after the publication of NRC in Assam.

“The NRC needs to be implemented wherever it is possible, at least in the states whose Chief Ministers are asking for its implementation,” he said talking to ANI.

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The final list of Assam’s National Register of Citizens was released on August 31, 2019 which excluded over 19 lakh names.

The VHP’s demand comes amid the state’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is seeking a review of the NRC list. The BJP leaders have said they do not trust the updated NRC, specifically prepared for Assam, and appealed to the central and the state governments to prepare a nationwide NRC.

More than 19 lakh people of the 3.29 crore applicants in Assam were left out of the final NRC. A total of 3,11,21,004 persons found eligible for inclusion in final NRC list. If sources are to be believed, Muslims account for just 700,000 – or 36 per cent – of the 19 lakh people excluded from the final NRC list.

The Home Ministry has gien an assurance that those excluded in the final list will not be immediately sent to dentition centres and they can appeal.

Jain said once the Citizenship Amendment Bill becomes an Act all the concerns being raised today will be resolved as it would pave the way for citizenship to non-Muslims from Bangladesh, Afghanistan and Pakistan, who came to India after March 24, 1971 (the cut-off date for NRC) to get included in NRC.

“Muslims would seek citizenship for other reasons but Hindus would seek it for atrocities being committed against them. Be it in Pakistan, Bangladesh or Afghanistan. To provide them citizenship is not only our obvious duty but legal duty also,” he said.

Justifying the legal right, he mentioned the treaty signed in New Delhi by the then Prime Ministers Jawaharlal Nehru and Liaquat Ali Khan, which he said guarantees the rights of minorities in both countries after the Partition of India.

“Providing citizenship to the victims was the main theme of this treaty. We have to address their concerns which is not possible without Citizenship Amendment Bill. Once it becomes an Act, all these problems will be resolved,” he said.

On January 8 this year, the Lok Sabha passed the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, which declared that a specified category of undocumented immigrants residing in India–Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians who hail from Afghanistan, Bangladesh or Pakistan–would not be treated as illegal immigrants.

This implied that only Muslims, atheists and practitioners of indigenous faiths from these countries would be treated as undocumented, making them fit for detention and deportation.

Jain said the issue of NRC and Citizenship Amendment Bill along with abrogation of Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir would prominently figure in the annual “Samanvaya Baithak” or “All India Coordination Meet” of RSS beginning September 7 in Rajasthan’s Pushkar.

He along with VHP chief Alok Kumar would attend the meeting convened three months after Prime Minister Narendra Modi returned to power with a massive electoral mandate in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.

“Yes, we will discuss these issues. Why not,” he said when asked whether these issues will be on top of agenda in the RSS coordination meet.

“All the issues which are stirring up the society would be discussed. However, the issue of Jammu and Kashmir is now not stirring up. It is moving ahead towards a solution,” he said.

Jain said issues related to Jammu and Kashmir would be a sort of review of government’s efforts in bringing normalcy there.

“Though we don’t find any dearth in government’s effort, we will discuss it and suggest the things for the betterment of situation,” he added.

The three-day coordination meeting would see the participation of leaders from various Sangh Parivar affiliated organizations including RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat, BJP President Amit Shah, Working President J P Nadda, and General Secretary (Organisation) BL Santosh among others.

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