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Amit Shah accuses Mamata of instigating riots
Kolkata, March 1, 2020
Accusing West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee of instigating riots and burning of trains and railway stations in Bengal during the violent anti-CAA movement in the state, Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Sunday alleged that she was "disrespecting" the founding fathers of the constitution as also tribal and scheduled caste leaders by opposing and spreading fear about the Citizenship (Amendment) Act.
Shah said not a single member of any minority community would lose citizenship because of the legislation, which seeks to provide Indian nationality to Hindus, Christians, Sikhs, Parsis, Jains and Buddhists who fled religious persecution in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh till December 31, 2014.
"The opposition is terrorising minorities... I assure every person from the minority community that CAA only provides citizenship, doesn't take it away. It won't affect your citizenship.
"No minority community member from Kolkata or West Bengal will lose citizenship because of the CAA," Shah said, addressing a large BJP rally at the Shahid Minar Maidan here.
He said lakhs and crores of Bengalis were facing a big problem all these years as they had come to India as refugees and did not have citizenship.
"Now Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given citizenship to lakhs of people. But from the time Modi brought the CAA in the Parliament, the Congress, the Communists and Mamata Banerjee have all been opposing it.
"The refugees are being made to fear that they will have to produce documents. Nothing of this sort will happen. Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist and Jains do not need any documents."
"I want to ask Mamata didi -- why are you hurting the interests of our refugees?" he said.
Shah also wondered what harm the dalit Namashudras and Matuas had done to Banerjee that she thinks they are not her people.
"She opposed the CAA and instigated riots, torching of trains and railway stations in Bengal. You only care about infiltrators. Refugees are being misled and scared... Hindus who fled our neighbouring countries who were raped and threatened and killed... should they not get citizenship? Why are you only fond of infiltrators?" Shah said.
Shah said by opposing CAA, Banerjee was disrespecting the commitments given to refugees by Mahatma Gandhi, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel and Maulana Abul Kalam Azad.
"By opposing a law passed by Parliament you are also disrespecting the Father of our Constitution Ambedkar. You are also disrespecting the likes of Harichand Thakur, Guruchand Thakur (founders of Matua sect) and Panchannan Barma (a leader of Koch and Rajbanshi people)," Shah said during his aggressive speech.
However, he categorically said the centre would give citizenship to all refugees and "not stop until and unless all of them get it".
"Mamata didi cannot stop us," he added.
The CAA has generated much political acrimony in Bengal, with the Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress, as also the Left and the Congress going all out to oppose it.
In fact, one of the prime reasons for Shah's rally was to give a boost to his party's campaign backing the law.
Political observers feel the CAA could be a game-changer either way in the civic polls, being considered the semi-final before next year's all-important assembly polls.
Shah also launched a new BJP political campaign Aar Noe Anyay (No more injustice).
"It is a campaign to change the government in Bengal," he said, and made public a mobile number on which party supporters can give missed call to be a part of the programme.