Coochbehar: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee lashed out against the BJP government at the Centre on Monday for planning to introduce the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019 in Parliament and said the proposed legislation is a "trap" like the NRC to exclude Bengalis and Hindus as legal citizens of the country.
The CAB, 2019 is expected to be introduced in the winter session of Parliament, which began today, as the previous one had lapsed as it was not tabled in the Rajya Sabha after being passed by Lok Sabha on January 8.
She also criticised the Centre for failing to revive the Indian economy, Banerjee said the government is only interested in selling out PSUs like Air India instead of taking steps to revive it. "The Centre is planning to bring in CAB but let me tell you it is just another trap like the NRC. It is a trap to exclude Bengalis and Hindus from the list of legal citizens and make them refugees in their own countries," Banerjee said.
The bill seeks to provide Indian citizenship to Hindus, Jains, Chrstians, Sikhs, Parsis and Buddhists from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan after seven years of residence in India even if they do not possess any document. "After our government came to power we had taken steps to grant citizenship to refugees of enclaves in Coochbehar district. But we had never imposed any condition that they have to be in this country for six years," Banerjee said.
The proposed implementation of National Register of Citizens in Bengal has turned into a flash point in West Bengal with the Trinamool Congress government vehemently opposing it. It had created a panic claiming 11 lives in the state following the omission of about 19.6 lakh names from the final NRC list in Assam.
Majority of the names omitted from the list were allegedly those of Hindus and Bengali Hindus.