Mamata Banerjee ramps up offensive, announces mega rally against Citizenship Act

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Updated: December 13, 2019 6:47:03 PM

West Bengal will not allow the implementation of the amended Citizenship Act and the National Register of Citizens exercise, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said on Friday.

CAB, mamata banerjee, BJP, mamata banerjee news, politics, India, citizenship amendment billTerming the CAB as a “divisive and draconian” law, the Bengal chief minister stressed that her government would not cooperate with the Centre for enacting the Citizenship Act. (PTI File Photo)

West Bengal will not allow the implementation of the amended Citizenship Act and the National Register of Citizens exercise, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said on Friday as she announced a mega rally on December 16 and a series of protest programmes across the state against the legislation.

“We will never allow NRC exercise and Citizenship Act in Bengal. We will not implement the amended Act, even though it has been passed in Parliament. The BJP can’t just bulldoze the states to implement it,” Banerjee said addressing a press conference in Kolkata.

“The Citizenship Act will divide India. As long as we are in power, not a single person in the state will have to leave the country,” the Bengal CM asserted.

Terming the CAB as a “divisive and draconian” law, the Bengal chief minister stressed that her government would not cooperate with the Centre for enacting the Citizenship Act. “In a democracy, even if you have majority in terms of numbers in Parliament, it doesn’t mean you can impose your views. The essence of democracy lies in building consensus, taking everybody along,” she asserted.

Referring to Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s scheduled visit to Assam, Banerjee said it would be a “blot” on the country’s reputation if he scrapped the plan, amid protests across Northeast. The summit between Modi and Abe was eventually deferred to a later date yet to be decided, the MEA said.

Banerjee has been one of the early critics of the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019. She pitched against the bill even before it got the Parliament nod. She has also attacked the Centre on the NRC issue and claims the exercise is planned to target minorities in the country.

Massive protests erupted in the Northeastern states and Assam even before the legislation was passed by both the Houses. Curfew was imposed in parts of Assam including Guwahati, Dibrugarh, Tezpur and Dhekiajuli.

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