Slamming Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan for refusing to implement the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) in the state, Union Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan on Sunday said that the CM is "playing to the gallery".
"The CAA has been passed by the Parliament and inked by the President and yet, Vijayan says it won't be implemented in Kerala. This is nothing but playing to the gallery," said Muraleedharan, the only Keralite in the Narendra Modi cabinet.
Reminding Vijayan that those occupying constitutional posts should behave, the Union Minister said that Opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala and Vijayan are both taking to the streets and creating disorder in Kerala.
Last week, both Vijayan and Chennithala along with their allies joined hands against CAA. On Saturday, they staged a state-wide protest that attracted a large number of people.
Vijayan also gave orders on Friday to stall the NPR process and Kerala became the second state after West Bengal to stop all activities associated with updating the National Population Register (NPR).
After the West Bengal government, the LDF-led Kerala government on Friday has stalled the National Population Register (NPR) process. The order passed by the state government stated that it had stalled the process in the wake of the apprehension among the public about NPR leading to the National Register of Citizens (NRC) in the wake of the amended Citizenship Act.
The Centre has stated that the CAA cannot be stalled by states as it comes under the Union government but has assured that nation-wide NRC has not been implemented yet.
The NPR documents all the usual residents of the country and is prepared at the local, sub-District, District, State and National level under provisions of the Citizenship Act 1955. Any resident who has resided in a local area for the past 6 months or more, or intends to do the same has to mandatorily register in the NPR.
The NPR will contain demographic and biometric details and will be prepared by September 2020. The NPR was first prepared in 2010 and updated in 2015. Meanwhile, the census department is currently gearing for the next census count (which is undertaken once in a decade) in 2021.
(With inputs from IANS)