New Delhi: Union Minister of State Shantanu Thakur has said that the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) will be implemented across the country in a week.
“Today I am giving a guarantee that CAA will be implemented in Bengal and other states of India in the next seven days,” Thakur said while addressing a public gathering in Kakdwip in West Bengal’s South 24 Parganas on Sunday.
Thakur claimed that people who have migrated into the country after 1971 have the right to vote but he has heard from some quarters that such people are being deprived of their voting rights.
“Those who have come to this country after 1971 have full right to vote, but I have heard that there are thousands of people here who do not have the right to vote. They have been deprived of their voting rights,” he said.
In an attack on Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader asked whether those who are being denied voting rights are from the Matua community or are BJP supporters.
“The Chief Minister will have to answer why they have been deprived of their voting rights, why their voter cards have not been made. Is it because they belong to the Matua community or are supporters of the BJP,” the BJP Lok Sabha MP from North 24 Parganas’ Bangaon said.
Thakur also questioned why the police ask for proof of property from the 1970s even if they have voter ID, at the time of passport inquiry.
“The Chief Minister says that everyone here is a citizen of this place and they have the right to vote. If it is so, then when the documents go to the DIG at the time of passport enquiry, why do they ask for proof of property from them of the 1970s? The police need to answer this,” he said.
“For passport enquiry, recognition should be given only after seeing the voter card, Aadhar card and ration card. I am saying that the state government is doing all this for politics,” Thakur asserted.
The senior BJP leader said that it is essential to ensure the future of those citizens who have come to the country post-1971.
“Those who have come to the country after 1971 are citizens here and have full right to vote. We need to ensure that the future generations are secure,” he said.
Thakur pointed out that the CAA is being implemented to ensure that such problems do not occur and their future is secure.
“CAA is being implemented only to secure the future of these people so that they do not face any kind of problem in future. No one has the capacity to stop us from implementing CAA,” he said.
Earlier in January, officials said that the notification of the CAA rules is expected to happen ‘well in advance’ before the Lok Sabha polls’ announcement.
A senior government official mentioned that the regulations for the CAA, introduced by the Narendra Modi government, aim to confer Indian citizenship to persecuted non-Muslim migrants – including Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, Buddhists, Parsis, and Christians – who migrated from Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Afghanistan and arrived in India before December 31, 2014.
Following the passage of the CAA by Parliament in December 2019 and its subsequent Presidential assent, significant protests erupted in various parts of the country.