Won't attend NPR meet in Delhi on Jan 17: Mamata
Kolkata: Bengal will skip the Centre's meeting on National Population Register, which will be held in Delhi on January 17. Making the announcement in Kolkata on Wednesday, TMC chief Mamata Banerjee said: "Let them (the Centre) pull my government down if they like".
Banerjee, one of BJP's and Prime Minister Narendra Modi's fiercest critics, was the first to stop the process of National Population Register in her state through a formal order and said if the BJP wishes to implement National Registry of Citizens in Bengal, it can happen "over my dead body".
Last week, she underscored her stance, calling herself the peheradaar (guard) of citizens' rights.
Addressing a gathering held at Esplanade to protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and National Register of Citizens (NRC), Banerjee said neither she would attend the meeting in Delhi nor any of her party colleagues would go there.
"I will not attend the meeting in Delhi. NPR is the first stage towards NRC and BJP is trying to divide society by trying to implement NPR, NRC and CAA." She said 130 crore people who live in India were all Indian citizens and have one document or the other which are enough to prove their citizenship.
Banerjee has been part of several rallies in Kolkata and in districts and attended many protest gatherings as well. The movement will be intensified from January 22, she added.
It was Banerjee who sent a delegation comprising MLAs and MPs of her party to Assam when the names of 19 lakh people including 12 lakh Bengalis had been dropped from the NRC list. She also sent a delegation and provided financial assistance to the next of kin of two people who died in police firing during a protest rally in Karnataka.
In the past one month, the Chief Ministers of Punjab, Madhya Pradesh, Kerala, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar and Jharkhand have categorically said the respective governments would not allow CAA in their states.
Two days ago, 20 Opposition parties met in Delhi and decided that Chief Ministers who have refused to allow National Register of Citizens and the citizenship law in their states must suspend the process of National Population Register.
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