On Saturday, senior Congress leader P Chidambaram stated the National Population Register (NPR) was made a "controversial" issue by BJP's approach to it. The former Finance Minister who is on bail for his links in the INX media case stated that at the time it was brought in under the UPA government, it was a non-controversial issue.
However keeping in mind the present row over the National Register of Citizens (NRC) as well as BJP's additional amends to it, it becomes a "suspect" in present times.
"Given the present context and present circumstances, NPR is suspect and NPR will not be allowed. All Congress Chief Ministers will fall in line... Once the party takes a decision, all Congress Chief Ministers will fall in line," he said.
Earlier Congress leaders had claimed that the UPA version of NPR was very different from the NDA version. They also claimed that after introducing the idea of the NRC and facing flak, the government was trying to bring it in through the backdoor of NPR.
P Chidambaram further tried to highlight the differences in the UPA and NDA "version" of the NPR stating that in 2010, NPR was done by the Office of the Census Commissioner only in 13 states and not all over India. Hence he stated that the party was still waiting to see in how many states the present government would roll out the NPR.
"NPR was a non-controversial issue. It has been made suspect and controversial because of the BJP's approach, because of amending the form, because adding six more fields to the existing 15 fields, because of the Minister of State's statement in Parliament that NPR will lead to NRC. So what was non-controversial has become very controversial now," stated Chidambaram.