Protest against the Citizenship Amendment Bill and NRC at Jantar Mantar on Saturday. (Express Photo by Tashi Tobgyal)
Hundreds of people from across Delhi, including students, gathered near Jantar Mantar here on Saturday to oppose the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) and the proposal for nationwide implementation of the National Register of Citizens (NRC).
“The CAB represents Muhammad Ali Jinnah’s and Savarkar’s two-nation theory, and will alter the very character of India,” said Yogendra Yadav, president of Swaraj India, during the protest.
Accusing the BJP of playing vote bank politics, Yadav told The Sunday Express, “They are tinkering with the Constitution and the very soul and idea of India. The NRC of Assam excluded both Hindus and Muslims, which goes against the BJP’s narrow interest. With the CAB, it assures the Hindus that even if you’re caught in the NRC net, don’t worry, as long as you’re Hindu, you’ll be kept out of it... “
He added, “Implementing NRC is against all marginal sections of society... But the NRC plus CAB —- that makes sure that it hits only Muslims.”
Congress MP from Kishunganj, Bihar, Mohammad Jawed told The Sunday Express that the move would hurt India internationally. “If it is passed, world over the message will go that a Muslim-hating government is leading this country... The Congress is very clear —- we do not appease any religion, and have always been with the weak, poor and the disenfranchised,” he said.
On the proposal to implement NRC nationwide, activist Umar Khalid said, “The Assam NRC exercise took Rs 1,300 crore. If implemented across India, it will take lakhs of crores. And the government keeps increasing fees for education, and cutting budgets for education and healthcare.”