Tamil Nadu CM backs NPR, CAA, says uninfluential parties opposing it
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami (EPS) has called the opposition to the National Population Register (NPR) opportunistic and said parties that have lost people’s trust are confusing them by spreading rumours about the NPR and the National Register of Citizens (NRC).
Palaniswami made it clear that his government was not against the Citizenship Amendment Act(CAA) and National Population Register (NPR).
“I want to recall that BJP government at the Centre had brought amendments to implement NPR in 2003. The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) was in alliance with the BJP and shared power at the Centre. Later, the Congress party-led UPA-I had implemented the BJP’s NPR amendment in 2010. DMK was also part of UPA-I. But, the same DMK party and its allies are objecting to NPR for political reasons,” Palaniswami told the media.
He said NPR was merely a record of Indian residents that had also been updated by the Congress government and added, that as far as NRC was concerned, home minister Amit Shah had clarified it is not being implemented.
“Home Minister Amit Shah had already cleared the air stating his government will not implement the NRC. The home minister also said NPR is not a new method as Congress brought it in 2010,” he said.
Hitting out at the DMK, he said a misleading campaign about NRC was being run by parties that had lost their trust and influence among the masses.
“The DMK and Congress alliance brought the NPR in 2010. But why should they object to it now? It is clear that they are doing this merely for political gains. Political parties which have lost their trust and influence among people are spreading rumours that NRC will be implemented in India,” Palaniswamy said.
DMK spokesperson Saravanan Annadurai said it was the chief minister, who was speaking without any understanding.
“The Congres-brought NPR is entirely different as it had no connections with the citizenship. But, BJP’s NPR is an attempt to link it with citizenship,” said Annadurai.
He said DMK chief Stalin was right to say that the NRC and the NPR are two sides of a coin under the CAA 2019.
“There is a concern that NPR will create an ecosystem that will discriminate against all religions. If the BJP is implementing the same NPR brought by Congress, why should it spend Rs 4000 crore on NPR now? Annadurai shot back.