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Home / India News / Goa BJP leader’s sharp retort to Archbishop statement on CAA has link to Constitution

Goa BJP leader’s sharp retort to Archbishop statement on CAA has link to Constitution

In a statement on Saturday, Goa Archbishop Filipe Neri Ferrao had urged the central government to revoke the CAA and desist from implementing the NRC and the National Population Register.

india Updated: Feb 10, 2020 15:12 IST
Gerard de Souza
Gerard de Souza
Hindustan Times, Panaji
File photo of Goa Archbishop Filipe Neri Ferrao.
File photo of Goa Archbishop Filipe Neri Ferrao.(ANI Photo)

Goa BJP leader Narendra Sawaikar on Monday hit out at Archbishop Filipe Neri Ferrao for criticising Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and National Register of Citizens (NRC), saying church-run educational institutions not to claim the benefits of taxpayers’ money and minority status. He even said that Article 30 of the Constitution, under which these institutes claim these benefits, is ‘discriminatory’.

“If [the] CAA is discriminatory then Article 30 of [the] constitution of India is more discriminatory. Don’t claim benefits at taxpayers money by claiming minority status,” Sawaikar said on Twitter. The said article gives rights to minorities to establish and administer educational institutions. 

Sawaikar, who was defeated at last year’s Lok Sabha elections while seeking a second term from South Goa, said that the Archbishop’s statement is based on ifs and buts. “Without any logic, reasoning and rationale. In fact, CAA is not divisive but the statement is,” Sawaikar said. 

Sawaikar is currently appointed as the NRI Commissioner for Goa, a post with a cabinet rank.

In a statement on Saturday, Goa Archbishop Filipe Neri Ferrao had urged the central government to revoke the CAA and desist from implementing the NRC and the National Population Register (NPR).

“The very fact that the CAA uses religion goes against the secular fabric of the country. It goes against the spirit and heritage of our land which, since times immemorial, has been a welcoming home to all, founded on the belief that the whole world is one big family. Such exercises will result in a direct victimisation of the underprivileged classes, particularly the Dalits, the Adivasis, the migrant labourers, the nomadic communities and the countless undocumented people, who, after having been recognized as worthy citizens and voters for more than seventy years in this great nation, will suddenly run the risk of becoming stateless and candidates for detention camps in their teeming millions,” the Archbishop said in the statement.

“The CAA, the NRC and the NPR are divisive and discriminatory and will certainly have a negative and damaging effect on a multicultural democracy like ours,” the Archbishop further said in the statement.

The BJP has consistently claimed that no one will be asked to show documents and that no decision has been taken on the countrywide roll out of the NRC and hence no one should worry.

“Why should [the] Archbishop oppose CAA? When: 1. SC is hearing and will decide a challenge to the law; 2. [a] 14 year [C]atholic girl is fighting for justice in Pakistan 3. Crores of people are supporting CAA. Unfounded opposition. [The] Archbishop says that CAA shld be withdrawn as it is being opposed. My question is why? When Crores of people are supporting CAA, including Goans. #StopSpreadingFalsehood,” Sawaikar said in a series of tweets.

“Court would struck (sic) down a law if it is discriminatory. Why [do] institutions practising law (cannon) rush to conclusions?” Sawaikar also said.