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BJP Committed to bring UCC but only after following all democratic processes: Shah

Home Minister Amit Shah said on Thursday that the BJP is committed to bringing Uniform Civil Code (UCC) into the country, but only after following all democratic processes and discussions about it.

Addressing an event here, he also exuded confidence in the BJP’s victory in the parliamentary elections in Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat, as well as in MCD (Municipal Corporation of Delhi) polls.

The Home Secretary lauded Prime Minister Naredra Modi for freeing the country’s politics from the “naasur” (cancer) of casteism, dynasty and appeasement.

“Modi ji has freed the politics of the country from casteism, dynasty and appeasement and started a politics of achievement. Whoever performs will rule the country. Whoever strives will rule the land. Those who are pro-country will rule (it).

“Nobody would rule based on someone’s place of birth or the caste he or she belongs to or how much atonement someone does,” he said, adding that the country’s people have accepted this policy from the Modi government.

Speaking of the UCC, Shah said it has been a pledge of the BJP since the days of Bhartiya Jan Sangh.

“Not only the BJP, the Constituent Assembly has advised the parliament and states that the UCC should come into the country at an opportune time,” he said at the Times Now Summit on “India: A vibrant democracy, a global bright spot.”

Shah said that for any secular country, laws should not be based on religion.

“If a nation and states are secular, how can laws be based on religion? For every believer there should be one law passed by parliament or state assemblies,” he said.

However, he said that the Constituent Assembly’s commitment had faded into obscurity over time.

“Except the BJP, no other party is in favor of the Uniform Civil Code. They don’t even talk about it. If they don’t have courage, they won’t resist it. But they won’t say that, okay, you implement it, we’re with you. We are part of a democracy. In a democracy, a healthy debate is a necessity. There is a need for an open and healthy debate on this issue,” Shah said.

He said that in three BJP-ruled states – Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Gujarat – a panel has been formed under the chairmanship of the retired Supreme Court judge and the chief justices of the Supreme Court, where all groups and people of different religions can express their views bring.

“We will take action based on the advice that comes after this exercise… The BJP is committed to bringing UCC, but only after the conclusion of all democratic discussions,” he said.

On the repeal of Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir, Shah said that many security experts used to say that if you don’t touch 370, your hand will burn.

Now Article 370 is gone and Jammu and Kashmir is prosperous and it has also helped to control terrorism in the country, he said.

“For many years it was propagated that Jammu and Kashmir was part of India because of Article 370. Now there is neither Article 370 nor 35A, yet Jammu and Kashmir belongs to India,” Shah said.

A new generation of democracy is emerging in Jammu and Kashmir, where more than 30,000 panches and sarpanches are trickling democracy down to the grassroots, he said.

The home minister also said Rs 56,000 crore in investment had entered Jammu and Kashmir and a record 80 lakh tourists, the highest since independence, have visited the Union Territory since 2019.

“In terms of terrorism, since the 1990s when it started, there are now the lowest incidents of terrorism. The stone pelting has stopped completely. It’s zero. It’s a very big development,” he said.

Shah said that the roots of terrorism and those harboring it in Jammu and Kashmir are very deep, but the government is determined to eradicate it completely.

“I assure you that in JK we will not allow terrorism to spread its roots and we have a duty to ensure that the entire JK is terrorism free,” the home minister added.

Earlier, in his inaugural address at the summit, the Home Secretary said it was time for India’s democratic values ​​to be made known to the world.

He said the country was on track to reach its goal of a $5 trillion economy by 2025.

“In 2014, the country had four unicorn startups and the number has now risen to more than 100,” Shah stressed.

When asked about allegations of abuse by agencies such as the Central Bureau of Investigation and Enforcement ahead of the election, the interior minister said federal agencies were operating freely and anyone with grievances can go to court.

On the issue of the alleged video of imprisoned AAP minister Satyendar Jain of him being given special treatment in Tihar prisons, Shah suggested asking Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi party whether the video was real or not.

“If the video is real, the responsibility lies with his party and you ask me questions. I had also gone to prison and resigned as minister. Such shamelessness to hold on to the post of minister even after being in prison is unprecedented,” he said.

When asked about provisions that would allow the Center to fire a minister in such a scenario, he said that even the creators of the constitution might not have foreseen such things, and therefore there was no such provision.

On the Shraddha Walkar case, the home minister said that the Delhi police and public prosecutor’s office will ensure that whoever killed the 27-year-old woman receives the most severe punishment in the shortest possible time.

“I have my eye on the whole thing. I just want to tell the people of the country that whoever did this, through legal process, the Delhi Police and Prosecutor’s Office will ensure strict punishment in the shortest possible time,” he claimed.

When asked about the need for anti-conversion laws, Shah said that wherever there are BJP-ruled state governments, such laws have been made.

“In Gujarat, I can tell you in detail. We have it and we also execute it strictly. It is for state legislatures to decide on this,” he said.

When asked about the upcoming parliamentary elections in Gujarat, Shah said the contest is between the BJP and the Congress.

“We will break all records in terms of seat and vote percentage in Gujarat,” he said.

The home minister said the BJP will win the elections in Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh alongside the MCD polls by huge margins.

On border issues in Ladakh, he said our border dispute with China is years old and a legacy of former Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru.

“Who asks the question? Under whom one lakh acre of land went to Chinese control, do they cultivate it? They should read history. As for the BJP government under Narendra Modi, we are determined that this is a sovereign country. Not a single inch of his land will come under foreign occupation. It is our commitment to the people of the country,” Shah said.

In the quarrel over Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, Shah said that not only BJP but the entire country called Savarkar ‘Veer Savarkar’.

“There is no need to settle this. It is settled. If one understands the difference between Savarkar and Veer Savarkar, it is settled. It is not Padma Shri, Padma Bhushan, Bharat Ratna conferred by a government. 130 crore people have the bravery of Saravakar by adding ‘Veer’ to his name forever. People who make comments should try to spend 10 days in the cell where Savarkar spent 10 years,” he said.

A row has erupted over comments made by Congress leader Rahul Gandhi during the Maharashtra leg of the Bharat Jodo Yatra of the Congress, where he said that Savarkar had helped the British and written a petition for mercy out of fear.

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