Amid fears in a section of population against the likely creation of a country-wide National Register of Citizens, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Sunday sought people’s support to the move terming it a “true tribute” to Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.
Speaking at a function here to mark the death anniversary of the first Union home minister, Adityanath said, “Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel checked divisive policies of the British.” “Through his efforts, he foiled evil intentions of anti-India elements, who had a mindset of dividing the country, and included the country’s 563 princely states into the Republic of India, contributing to the creation ‘Ek Bharat, Shreshtha Bharat’,” he said.
“The entire country should be united on the NRC and this will be a true tribute to Iron Man Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. “Sardar Patel will be remembered for decades for being the symbol of India’s unity, besides as a great freedom fighter,” the chief minister added. Bowing to a Sardar Patel’s portrait on the stage, the chief minister said, “We are trying our best to make India of your dreams by following your ideals.”
Adityanath said the Centre has been successful in bringing Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh under Indian legislation, following the ideals of ‘Ek Bharat, Shreshtha Bharat’ by Sardar Patel. “We will not accept any conspiracy against the creation of NRC and breach of the country’s security. The whole country should unite and cooperate on this issue,” he said.
In an apparent reference to the Citizenship Amendment Act, providing for the grant of Indian citizenship to the persecuted non-Muslim minorities of the three Muslim majority countries Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan, the chief minister said India has been “a refuge for the suffering and oppressed humanity of the world”.
He also referred to the height of the world’s tallest statue, that of Sardar Patel, installed on the bank of Sardar Sarovar, as the one matching Patel’s persona. “His memory inspires national unity today. The great personality of Sardar Patel empowers all of us to overcome and quit bad habits. Following the holy ideals of Sardar Patel, we have realized the true concept of ‘Ek Bharat- Shreshtha Bharat’,” Adityanath said.