Trinamool Congress MP Saugata Roy on Wednesday asked the BJP government to clear the air surrounding the contentious National Register of Citizens (NRC) and scrap its idea altogether. Participating in the debate on the motion of thanks to the President's address in Lok Sabha, he said people protesting at Shaheen Bagh against the Citizenship Amendment Act and NRC were not "our enemies" and were holding the national flag.
This comes days after the Home Ministry did, indeed, declare in writing that there were no plans at the moment for a pan-India NRC. As far as the NRC in Assam is concerned, and on the topic of Trinamool bastion Bengal, videos had earlier surfaced showing how a mid-2000s Mamata Banerjee had fervently sought action against 'illegal Bangladeshi infiltrators'.
"My appeal to the government is to speak with one voice. Scrap the NRC and CAA and declare that there will be no NRC. Do not stand on prestige. The protesters at Shaheen Bagh are not our enemies. They are holding the National Flag and singing the National Anthem. Do not take them as enemies. Do not shoot at them. Do not shout at them. I think, shooting and shouting alone is the actual conspiracy against the Prime Minister," Saugata Roy said.
The TMC leader accused the government of selectively citing Mahatma Gandhi in the Address. "This government is going on untruth, not according to what Gandhiji said. They should not use the name of pujya Bapu in pursuing their nefarious, divisive political designs."
Saugata Roy asserted that the President's Address failed to mention economic woes like crisis in the auto industry, real estate sector, and the non-banking financial companies and the unemployment. "This is an empty Address, which does not address any of the pressing problems of the country," he said.
Roy also highlighted cases of violence during the anti-CAA agitation and noted the deaths in police firings against protesters. "In Assam, three people were killed in police firing. Firing by the police has spread all over the country. In UP, the biggest State of the country, more than 20 people have been killed in police firing. The protest has spread from Jamia to AMU, BHU and Delhi University. Universities and colleges, even IITs across the country, have joined the protest," he said.
(With ANI inputs)