AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi has accused Home Minister Amit Shah of misleading the country over the National Population Register (NPR). Speaking to news agency ANI, Owaisi said that the NPR is the first step towards the National Register of Citizens (NRC).
“They (government) are doing NPR according to the Citizenship Act, 1955 and saying it is not connected to the NRC. Why is the Home Minister misleading the country?” he asked,
The Hyderabad MP said Amit Shah in the Parliament referred to him to say NRC will be implemented in the country. He claimed that the officials involved in the NPR exercise will ask for documents from the citizens and the “final list will be the NRC”.
Owaisi said the Ministry of Home Affairs in its annual report 2018-19 has stated that the NPR is the first step towards the creation of the NRC.
“I agree that Amit Shah is more educated than me. He should read chapter 15 of the annual report of 2018-19 of his ministry. In point number 4, he himself is saying that NPR is the first step towards the creation of NRIC under the provisions of aforesaid statues…,” Owaisi said.
On Home Ministry’s website, he said that the ministry wrote India is in the process of setting up NPR which is the first step towards NRC.
“On November 26, 2014, when Kiren Rijiju was minister (MoS Home Affairs), in a reply, he said NPR is the register of all usual residents which includes citizens and non-citizens as well. In another reply, he said NPR is the first step towards the creation of NRIC,” Owaisi opined.
Earlier on Tuesday, Union Home Minister Amit Shah told ANI that there is no link between NPR and NRC. Attacking Owaisi, Shah, said, “I am not surprised by the stand taken by Owaisi ji. If we say the sun rises from the east, then Owaisi sahab would say it rises from the west. But I want to assure Owaisi ji too that the NPR is very different from the NRC and it has nothing to do with it.”
Shah’s remarks came after the Union Cabinet approved Rs 3,941.35 crore for updating the NPR. The NPR is a list of usual residents of the country. A usual resident is defined as a person who has resided in a local area for the past six months or more or a person who intends to reside in that area for the next six months or more.
The data for NPR was collected in 2010 along with the house-listing phase of the Census of India 2011.
Meanwhile, Owaisi has demanded an inquiry into the killing of 18 people in Uttar Pradesh during a protest against the just amended Citizenship Act and proposed a pan-India NRC exercise.
“Who killed 18 people in Uttar Pradesh? Should there not be an independent inquiry into this? There should be an inquiry. 5,400 people are in jail in Uttar Pradesh. The Prime Minister should speak on it. We expect him to order an independent inquiry,” he said.
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Source: Financial Express