Kolkata: Human rights organisation, Association for Protection of Democratic Rights (APDR), on Thursday staged a demonstration in front of Administrative Training Institute (ATI) building in Salt Lake against the ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC) government for training state government employees for National Population Register (NPR).
APDR secretary Ranjit Sur said the TMC government from the beginning was against the implementation of National Register of Citizens (NRC) in West Bengal but by giving lessons on NPR, it seems like TMC supremo and chief minister Mamata Banerjee is helping the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to implement NRC in the state.
“NPR is the first step for implementing NRC in Bengal. By giving training on NPR the Trinamool Congress once against has proven their dubious nature. On one side the chief minister is criticizing the BJP for NRC and is claiming NRC for being one of the reason for the downfall of the saffron camp in the recently concluded bypolls at the three assembly seats and on the other hand she is providing state government employees NPR training at ATI building,” Sur said.
The APDR secretary also stated that this training should be immediately stopped to avoid further division of West Bengal on religious lines.
Altaf Ahmed, assistant secretary APDR mentioned that Mamata Banerjee had earlier stated that she will conduct census in the state which is scheduled in 2021 and also that NPR has nothing to do with the census.
“Census is conducted with the purpose of getting demographic data of the population and is kept secret but NPR is done publicly to empower the purpose of implementing NRC,” Ahmed added.
While assuring people that NRC will not be implemented in West Bengal and that the TMC government would also oppose Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) when introduced in Parliament, chief minister of the state had sought people’s cooperation for NPR.
The NPR is to be conducted in 2020 before the census of 2021 for which week long training for the government officers has also begun in Salt Lake.
The political slugfest between the ruling Trinamool Congress and the saffron camp has intensified in the state, with the two parties leaving no stone unturned to outsmart each other in reaching out to the common people across the state.
While the ruling party is chanting slogans against the NRC, the leaders of the saffron camp are keen on implementing the same in order to identify the ‘illegal immigrants’ from the neighbouring country.
Meanwhile, two other anti- NRC forums called the ‘Joint Forum against NRC’ and ‘No NRC movement’ are also scheduled to take out protest rallies on December 9 and December 19 respectively against the NRC, CAB and the NPR.
“On one side TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee is enjoying the good results in the elections by opposing NRC. Contradictory, to her anti-NRC claim she has been encouraging government employees to get trained for NPR. It seems like she is just fooling the common people of the state,” said Monotosh Mukherjee, one of the organisers of No-NRC Movement.