‘Yes to Census, no to NPR’: Kerala government to inform Census Registrar General

Amid protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the proposed National Register of Citizens (NRC), the Kerala government will inform the Census Registrar General that it will provide all cooperation in the conduct of Census operations but NPR cannot be implemented in the state, a minister in Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s cabinet said on Monday. 

“Kerala cabinet decides to inform Census Registrar General that NPR cannot be implemented in the state. State would provide all cooperation in the conduct of Census operations. Any attempt to enforce NPR will only jeopardise the 2021 Census,” Kerala Finance Minister Thomas Isaac said in a tweet.

Isaac also retweeted CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury who said, “CENSUS YES – NPR NO. NPR –“We Shall Not Answer” (Jawaab Nahi Denge). For the NRC the answer will be “Hum Kaghaz Nahi Dhikayenge” (We shall not show Papers).”

Critics have claimed that the National Population Register (NPR) is a precursor to a nationwide NRC.

The new citizenship law promises citizenship to members of 6 non-Muslim communities from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh who entered India before December 31, 2014. 

Critics say that the new law is against the secular nature of the Indian Constitution and clubbed with the NRC may be misused to strip away some Muslims’ citizenship in the country. The BJP, however, has argued that the law has nothing to do with India’s Muslims and only helps those who fled religious persecution in the neighbouring countries. 

Earlier, Kerala became the first state last week to approach the Supreme Court against the recently enacted Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) seeking it to be declared unconstitutional and in violation of Article 14, 21, and 25 of the Constitution.

On December 31 last year, the state government had passed a resolution against the act, asking the Narendra Modi led Centre to withdraw the new legislation that has triggered nationwide protests. Moved by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, the resolution was supported by all the MLAs except BJP’s O Rajagopal.

Courtesy : DNA

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