Hyderabad: “The BJP is trying to bring out a Hindu Israel, a Hindu Pakistan- in the name of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA),” observed activist Yogendra Yadav, while speaking on the citizenship exercise in Hyderabad.

“CAA can be summarized in three words: No Muslims please! It is basically a signalling device. If you are a Jew, you can come to Israel. With CAA, the Centre is trying to say that if you are a non-Muslim, you are welcome to India,” said the founder of the political outfit Swaraj Abhiyan.

Stressing that India’s diversity has been its strength, the activist said, “In Europe’s experience, where there is diversity, a nation cannot happen. However, our country has shown the West that we have something different to offer. At a time when India’s diversity is being hailed, the Indian government is sending across a ‘we want to change our model’ message.”

Recalling Swami Vivekananda, who said he was proud to be an Indian because it gave refuge to everyone who came to the country, Mr Yadav asserted that the citizenship exercise is against the ‘idea of India’.

The activist contended that the government is bent on creating citizenship registers while ignoring issues like unemployment.

“Make National Register of Unemployed and National Register of Farmers first so that you can help them. But the government does not want that.”

Several concerned citizens took part in the programme expressing their dissent against CAA and NRC.

Speaking at the event, P Shankar from Dalit Bahujan Front (DBF) said, “There are many in Telangana who don’t have a date of birth certificate. Even I don’t have one. The current government is basically turning the whole country into a detention centre.”

Yogendra Yadav, along with Radhika Vemula, mother of Rohith Vemula, was speaking at an event on ‘Citizenship, Constitutionality and Social Justice in Fascist Times’, organized on Friday by Citizens against CAA-NPR-NRC.

Asma Rasheed, faculty at English and Foreign Languages University (EFLU) also spoke in the session, where the preamble of the Indian Constitution was readout.

Amritha Mohan

Amritha Mohan is a reporter at the NewsMeter. Shortly after completing her Master's in Communication at the University of Hyderabad, she began teaching courses on media and culture as a guest lecturer at the Department of Journalism and Mass Communication, North-Eastern Hill University (NEHU), Shillong. Amritha has previously interned with news organisations such as Greater Kashmir and Newslaundry. A lover of travel and photography, she spends most of her time planning road trips to the North-East. Nothing makes her happier than a green turf and a team to play football with. She primarily reports on education, tech, human-interesting and critical features.

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