People’s rally against NRC in Kolkata on December 9; Kanhaiya Kumar says several parties likely to support it

Several opposition parties have lent their support to the public rally in Kolkata on December 9 against rolling out the National Register of Citizens across the country

People’s rally against NRC in Kolkata on December 9; Kanhaiya Kumar says several parties likely to support it

NH Political Bureau

Hundreds, if not thousands of people will be starting a ‘padayatra’ from Darjeeling to Kolkata, culminating in a massive public rally against the Centre’s plan to roll out the National Register of Citizens.

Kanhaiya Kumar, CPI leader and former JNUSU president, told NH that several parties are likely to support the rally organised under the banner of ‘People Against NRC’. Left parties and civil society groups have already pledged their support, he added.

The movement has assumed added significance in view of West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee’s public defiance and assertion that she would not allow the NRC to be rolled out in the state.

Communication specialist and election strategist Prashant Kishor on Wednesday had tweeted, “15 plus states with more than 55% of India’s population have non-BJP Chief Ministers. Wonder how many of them are consulted and are on-board for NRC in their respective states”

Prashant Kishor’s tweet followed Home Minister Amit Shah’s statement in Parliament that the Centre would be rolling out the NRC across the country. A notification to this effect has already been issued and at the Centre’s direction, detention centres to hold foreigners are already being constructed in various states.

However, as Kishor hinted in his tweet, the Centre is yet to take state chief ministers into confidence or hold consultations with them.

Kanhaiya Kumar, without mincing his words, said that the NRC was unconstitutional and would result in a human tragedy. Not just Muslims but even Hindus were harassed in Assam, he pointed out, and people had to spend a lot of their resources in collecting documents, in travelling to designated courts and tribunals and queue up from 2 am in the morning.

People, he said, lose sight of the fact that millions of Muslims had left India during Partition. The exodus from India was of Muslims while non-Muslims were the ones who came into India.

Pointing out that even the BJP was divided on the issue and Himanta Biswa Sarma in Assam had even gone to the extent of saying that Assam had rejected the NRC, he expressed his hope that the opposition would unite to resist the plan which is designed to reduce citizens into refugees in their own country.

The NRC, he added, was going to be a disaster like Demonetisation. While citizens were forced to queue up to withdraw their own money and that too in small instalments following demonetisation, the NRC would force citizens to queue up to prove their citizenship.

The Modi Government, he added, appeared to see everything through the prism of religion and divisive politics.

There is total panic in states of the North East, West Bengal and Assam, he pointed out while hoping that good sense would prevail.

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