BJP hasn't put up 'no exit' board: Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi on Muslim leaders quitting party

Indore: In the wake of some Muslim leaders quitting BJP to protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act, union minority affairs minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi here on Sunday said his party has not put up a board of "no exit".

“The BJP is a big political party. The BJP has neither put up a board of 'no exit' nor of 'no entry'. Whosoever wants to leave the party is free to go,” he told media while responding to a query on Muslim leaders from the Congress-ruled Madhya Pradesh quitting the BJP in protest against the CAA. He said there is misunderstanding about CAA and those who oppose it should think with an open mind and get their misconceptions cleared as the new law is not a threat to any Indian citizen.

“It is a law about giving citizenship to minorities who left Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh due to religious persecution,” he said.

Naqvi said it was not for the first time that amendment in Citizenship Act was made. “Amendments were made in the Act for giving citizenship to Tamils who came from Sri Lanka and people from Uganda,” he said.

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The minister stated that Muslims from other countries can also get Indian citizenship if they fall in the framework of Indian citizenship guidelines.

Naqvi said citizenship of Indian Muslims is "100% protected".

To another question, he denied that BJP failed to convince its Muslim leaders that the CAA was in country's interest. "We appeal to those having misunderstanding about CAA to also think why a 'bogus bashing brigade' was spreading fake information about Act to create fear and confusion in a particular community," he said.

"Those who are spreading confusion about CAA also know that there will neither be any change in the new law, nor would it be withdrawn," he said.

Targeting people opposing the new law, Naqvi said those raising questions about the citizenship of Indian Muslims are suffering from a "distorted mentality". "Such people are committing sin of keeping a large section of society out of path of progress," he added.

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Who is Swara Bhaskar?

Naqvi said he does not know who Bollywood actor Swara Bhaskar is when media sought his reaction about actor holding an anti-CAA function in the city. “I don’t know who she is,” he replied.

Asked about exit polls predicting victory for Aam Aadmi Party in Delhi assembly polls, Naqvi said "Why should we comment on exit poll trends? Let the results come out".

To a query, Naqvi said protests against Citizenship Amendment Act at Shaheen Bagh in Delhi did not impact electoral landscape of nation's capital.

He said CAA, ban on triple talaq and abrogation of Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir were issues related to national interest. "These issues should not be seen in the context of party politics and results of Delhi Assembly polls," he added.

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Naqvi said citizenship of Indian Muslims is 100% protected