The Madhya Pradesh Cabinet of ministers headed by Chief Minister Kamal Nath on Wednesday passed a resolution against the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAA) and National Register of Citizenship (NPR), citing it unconstitutional.
The Congress led-state government urged the Narendra Modi led-National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government to withdraw the controversial Act owing to the growing public outrage. The Cabinet also asked the Centre to remove some clause from the NPR which seeks personal information and could be used for the National Register of Citizenship.
“The Cabinet has passed the resolution against the CAA, NPR and urged Modi government to withdraw the controversial Act,” said Law Minister PC Sharma after the Cabinet meeting.
Addressing media after the meeting, he said that the Cabinet feels that the CAA is a violation of article 14 (Equality before law) of Indian Constitution and against the sovereign of the country.
When asked about passing a resolution in the Assembly, the minister said, “We will table the resolution in the budget session of the Assembly and pass it.”
It may be recalled that the assemblies of Kerala, West Bengal and Congress-ruled Punjab and Rajasthan have already passed resolutions against the CAA. If the Madhya Pradesh government manages to pass the resolution in the upcoming session, the state will join the club of states which are up in arms against the CAA.
The one-page long ‘Shaskiye Sankalp’, passed by the Cabinet on Wednesday says: ‘India’s is a secular country, according to the constitution and it can’t be changed. And article 14 of the constitution gives the right to equality before the law to every citizen of the country.
But the CAA is a clear violation of the constitution which has been giving citizenship to the foreigners on religious grounds. The state can’t discriminate people on the basis of their religious belief. And this is the first attempt by the Union government since independence to divide the country on the basis of religion and it’s creating mayhem among the citizens.’
There has been widespread protest across the country against the law and Madhya Pradesh too has been witnessing peaceful protests by the people of every faith and religion, the resolution further says.
The one-page long resolution concludes, ‘In the light of above arguments, the state government urged the Union government to withdraw the CAA and remove some clause from the NPR which could be used for the NRC.’
The state BJP, however, termed the move worthless and politics of appeasement.
“Citizenship is a subject of centre and CAA has become law. In such a situation, states are left with no option but to implement it,” said BJP spokesperson Rajneesh Agrawal, adding that this is a just a political stunt to appease the people who are against the law.
“The resolution passed by the Cabinet holds no ground. Even if the state government passes a resolution in the upcoming Budget session of the Assembly, the government can only ask the Centre to withdraw it; it can’t reject it,” he added.