Bhopal: Madhya Pradesh Cabinet of ministers, headed by Chief Minister Kamal Nath on Wednesday passed a resolution against the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill (CAA) and National Register of Citizens (NPR), calling them unconstitutional.
The Congress led-state government urged the Narendra Modi-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government to withdraw the controversial bill owing to the growing public outrage. The Cabinet also asked the Centre to remove some clauses from the NPR which seek personal information and could be used for the National Register of Citizens.
“The Cabinet has passed the resolution against the CAA, NPR and urged Modi government to withdraw the controversial bill,” said Law Minister PC Sharma after the Cabinet meet.
Addressing media after the meeting, he said that the Cabinet feels that the CAA is a violation of Article 14 (Equality Before the Law) of Indian constitution and against the sovereign character of the country.
When asked about passing a resolution in the Assembly, the minister said, “We will table the resolution in the Budget session of the Assembly.”
Earlier, Kerala, West Bengal and Congress-ruled Punjab and Rajasthan have passed a resolution against the CAA in the assembly. If the Madhya Pradesh government manages to pass the bill in the upcoming session, the state will be the fifth state to do so.
The one-page long ‘Shaskiya Sankalp’ passed by the Cabinet on Wednesday reads, “India is a secular country according to the Constitution and it can’t be changed. And article 14 of the Constitution gives the right to equality before law to every citizen of the country.”
“But, CAA is a clear violation of the Constitution which will give citizenship to the immigrants on religious grounds. The state can’t discriminate against people on the basis of their religious beliefs. And this is the first attempt by the Union government since independence to divide the country on the basis of religion. It’s creating mayhem among the citizens,” the resolution asserts.
More so, there has been widespread protests across the country against the law and Madhya Pradesh too has been witnessing peaceful protests by the people of every faith and religion, the resolution adds.
It concludes, “In the light of these arguments, the state government has urged the Union government to withdraw CAA and remove some clauses from NPR, which could be used for the NRC.”
The state BJP, however, has termed this move worthless and called it politics of appeasement.
“The citizenship is a subject of the Centre and CAA has become a law. In such a situation, states are left with no option but to implement it,” said BJP Spokesperson Rajneesh Agrawal, adding that this is just a political stunt to appease the people who are against the law.
“The resolution passed by the Cabinet holds no ground. Even if the state government passes resolution in the upcoming budget session of the Assembly, the government can only ask the Centre to withdraw it, can’t reject it,” he added.