Assam Prime Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said on Saturday that the BJP is committed to the implementation of the Citizenship Amendment Act and that it is only a matter of time before the rules are drawn up. It is a Hindu’s legitimate right to become a citizen of his or her motherland and the BJP is fully behind the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), he said here at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit.
When asked why the rules for the law had not yet been drawn up, Sarma pointed out that there were people protesting against the CAA and then came the coronavirus pandemic. “It is in the process, but the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) remains committed. Parliament has passed the legislation, it’s only a matter of time when you see the CAA rules,” he said.
The prime minister also rejected the argument that the saffron party is using it as a polling board, saying that people who would vote because of CAA would not even represent two to three parliamentary seats in the country’s landscape.
“CAA is part of our commitment, it is part of our ideology. We will implement it. Someone wondered ‘where is Ram Mandir, when will it come’, you have seen Ram Mandir now, someone has asked ‘when article 370 will go’, it’s gone. In the same way that you will see the UCC (Uniform Civil Code) coming, the way you will see the CAA coming,” he said.
The Citizenship (Amendment) Act provides for the granting of Indian citizenship to non-Muslims – Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians – from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan. The CAA was passed by parliament on December 11, 2019, and the presidential nod was received the following day. It was subsequently notified by the Ministry of the Interior.
However, the law has yet to be implemented as the rules under the CAA have yet to be drafted. Rules under a law must be drafted for its implementation.
Sarma also criticized his former party, Congress, for choosing Mallikarjun Kharge as leader, saying that if Shashi Tharoor had won the polls for the post, he would have said democracy has arrived in Congress.
About those who voted for Tharoor in the polls, Sarma said there are many good-minded people in Congress and they will come to the BJP soon.
“These 1,000 people who voted for Shashi Tharoor, I think they are the ones who will join the BJP in six months or a year,” he claimed.
Sarma rejected the argument that the BJP does not conduct democratic internal polls, saying that every BJP president must go through a democratic process and that person cannot be monitored remotely.
Sarma also said the BJP will expand to two to three states by 2024 and this expansion will continue for two more elections.
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