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After making nearly 40 lakh people predominantly Muslims as suspect as an Indian citizen, BJP leaders seems to have found new hopes to create turmoil in rest of the country. Now they are demanding that this exercise should be taken in their states too. The chorus will be louder day by day with the thuggish anchors competing each other in abusing those who are questioning the motives.

Let me be very clear here that Assam’s case is different as there was definitely an issue of infiltrators from Bangladesh which caused deep resentment among them. The north eastern regions witnessed this Bengali domination everywhere giving resentment to local population. The crisis was in Tripura too but BJP and its spin masters cleverly made it a Hindu Muslim issue which frankly speaking it was not. It was a Bengali speaking people verses non Bengali speaking people in north east.

Secondly, the pending citizenship bill which want to liberally give out the citizenships to persecuted Hindus. So on the one side, Muslims in Assam and elsewhere have to prove their legacy before 1971 but a Hindu has to only say that he came to India in 2014 as per the bill and if it get passed then all this exercise is meant to harrass the Muslims.

There is another aspect in it. People living for such a long period should be considered for citizenship because at the end no other country is going to accept them. They are poor people and have stayed here for so long. More importantly, how can you divide the family itself. Your father is a citizen but mother is not, a brother is there but his sister is not. Cant the citizenship register satisfied with one legatee and children get into it automatically ?

If the exercise if fair under court observation, then, the government should have said that the findings are still not final and claims and counterclaims will be there for next six month to one year so that people get a fair treatment but BJP’s President Amit Shah’s conference virtually called all the forty lakh people as ghuspaithiye or infiltrators.His tone was so aggressive as it reflected perhaps the election strategy to convert India into a war zone between the natural citizens verses ghuspaithiayes or infiltrators. We know very well that BJP is eyeing West Bengal where a substantial number of voters are Muslims and Dalits. So a communal polarisation can be created there which thankfully so far never happened, to build BJP party and give it boost in the Loksabha elections.

BJP leaders in Maharashtra and Rajasthan too are demanding this. This is most shameful. To compare their states with a very different issue and then build up narratives about Muslims that they are not Indian citizens is a sinister campaign and must not be allowed. The Hindutva’s game plan is based on this to make every Indian Muslim look as suspect and then through their puppies in the media make this narrative deeper so that it look as if BJP is the only party which has the ‘courage’ to take up the things against anti national illegal people.

Assam’s case must be seen in isolation as there was an issue particularly after 1971. There were agitations and movements against the same. It was not really communal but more as an ethnic issue. What is important is that the exercise must be done in utmost restraints and need to be extra cautious in handling those people who might not make it to final list as what will happen to them if Bangladesh refuse to accept them. What action plan is there for the government of India?

As far as other political parties are concern, they must be very careful in making the statements. Mamta Banerjee’s rabble rousing would not work. Just to suggest that all should be located in Bengal if Assam fails, is a political jumlebaji which she should resist. These are serious questions and the government should take opposition into confidence and decide what can be done. Looking to the entire issue from a Hindu Muslim binary too is a problem because the issue was there. The point is that the BJP is keen to exploit this situation but our other friends should also look into historicity of the issue.

The government and the political parties must treat this issue in utter seriousness and not allow their illiterate cadres in other states to make victory signs or campaigning for a similar exercise elsewhere too which will only aggravate the polarisation among communities. We know 2019 elections are coming near and this government and its political-cultural affiliates will want such issues to be the main issues where their leaders can make sweeping political remarks to look the only ‘nationalists’ and ‘patriots’. You may win many elections but the country faces the biggest challenge on its unity and integrity. The dream of building a united India where people respect each other and enjoy equal fundamental rights irrespective of their religious, ethnic identities remain unfulfilled and yet we are creating circumstances and inviting more problems for our country than solving the old ones.

We hope the NRC officials will serious look into the lapses and resolve it soon. Dont allow the situation go out of hand at every village. It is also expected that the government must inform that no such exercise will be allowed in other part of the country as being propagated loudly by the puppies of crony media. People of India in one voice must reject such dangerous move which sought to divide us further under different pretexts. Supreme Court too need to clarify this as such an attempt will only vitiate the atmosphere in the country and give rise to new age lumpens in the name of nationalism who will take law into their hand to gain politically. Its serious but then those who want to make one community villain for their political gains, will do it and the only way is for all of us to stand united and expose their sinister designs through all our might.

Vidya Bhushan Rawat is a social and human rights activist. He blogs at www.manukhsi.blogspot.com twitter @freetohumanity Email: vbrawat@gmail.com

One Comment

  1. K SHESHU BABU says:

    If situation is left to hindutva fanatics, the ordeal of people during partition days may be repeated once again. Civil rights organisations and comon people who support humanity should come forward to curb religious riots and displacement of innocent refugees