Hyderabad: Is the impact of NRC and CAA negative for Indian citizens cutting across religious lines? The answer seems to be a mixed view. BJP-ruling states are favouring the National Register of Citizens (NRC) and Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) 2019, while West Bengal, Maharashtra and Kerala opposed the Modi-government’s move. Other states like Telangana are yet to announce their final decision. With Cabinet approving updating National Population Register (NPR), a fresh dose of controversy erupted in India.

AIMIM Chief Asaduddin Owaisi met Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao on Wednesday to discuss NRC and CAA and told media that the meeting was positive. Owaisi said that NPR was the first step to NRC and it would negatively affect all citizens, including Hindus.

A senior political analyst said, “Over six government documents and Parliament circulars since 2014 are explicitly linking NPR with NRC. NPR 2010 and 2019 included key additions seeking details about parents. If the Union Home Ministry does not give clarity to the nation, then mistrust on Modi-led NDA government will spread across India.”

West Bengal and Kerala already announced their stand on rejecting NPR. Vajpayee-government amended the Citizenship Act of 1955 and included Section 14A, which envisages national identity cards to citizens. Modi government is planning to collect citizens’ data with biometric and parents’ details, as well as updating NPR.

Civil rights organisations started opposing the collection of demographic and biometric data process. West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee, Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray and Owaisi said that NPR was the first step to NRC.

Noted economist Mohan Guruswamy tweeted, “The MHA report for 2018-19 makes their intention very clear. Yet Modi and Shah persist with their lies that NPR and NCR are not part of the same scheme.”

Above all, the chapter 15 of Registrar General and Census Commission of India (RG&CCI) clearly states that National Population Register (NPR) is the first step towards the creation of the National Register of the Citizens (NRC).

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