CAA: 'What About 1.5 Lakh Unlisted Muslims In Assam?' Asks Asaduddin Owaisi

CAA: 'What About 1.5 Lakh Unlisted Muslims In Assam?' Asks Asaduddin Owaisi

The Union Home Ministry notified the rules for implementation of Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) on Monday.

ANIUpdated: Saturday, March 16, 2024, 09:14 AM IST
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AIMIM MP Asaduddin Owaisi said he was open to the idea of granting citizenship to persecuted minorities from neighbouring countries but the methodology followed for that should not be based on religion. | PTI

Hyderabad (Telangana): Lok Sabha MP and AIMIM chief, Asaduddin Owaisi, questioned the fate of 1.5 lakh Muslims, who were allegedly left out of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) list in Assam after the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) was implemented in the state.

Addressing a public meeting in Hyderabad on Friday, days after the BJP-led Centre published the rules for implementing CAA across the country, Owaisi said, "Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma said the 12 lakh Hindus not listed in the NRC that was conducted in the state will be given Indian citizenship under the CAA. But what about the 1.5 lakh Muslims?" Owaisi said the Muslims left out of the NRC list will be asked to prove their descent by tracing their ancestry from 1962 or even 1951 at the Foreigners' Trinunal.

"They will be asked if they came in 1962 or 1951. They will be asked to show documents and birth certificates of their grandfathers. Those 1.5 lakh Muslims will be asked to fight it out at the Foreigners' Tribunal," the AIMIM chief said.

Owaisi warned that though the BJP has sought to allay fears among resident Muslims that they will not be impacted by the CAA, such 'things' will happen in due course.

"They (BJP) are saying nothing is going to happen immediately. I want to tell them, that it takes time for things to unfold," he said.

Owaisi pointed out that Union Home Minister Amit Shah has time and again, mentioned that CAA will be followed by the NRC and the National Population Register (NPR).

"Home Minister Amit Shah said in Parliament that NPR and NRC will also be implemented. Did he not talk about NPR and NRC in TV interviews?" the Hyderabad MP said.

Speaking about the NRC exercise in Assam in which a sizeable chunk of the population found their names missing in the final list, the AIMIM chief said, "The Supreme Court directed the government to conduct NRC in Assam. After spending Rs 1,600 crore, the NRC was conducted in Assam under the watch of the Supreme Court. 19 lakh individuals were not listed in it. Among them, 10-12 lakh were Hindus and 1.5 lakh Muslims." Owaisi, however, said he was open to the idea of granting citizenship to persecuted minorities from neighbouring countries but the methodology followed for that should not be based on religion.

"The government must give citizenship to people who come from Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh, but on the basis of religion," he said.

The Union Home Ministry notified the rules for implementation of Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) on Monday, days ahead of the announcement of the schedule for the Lok Sabha elections.

The CAA rules, introduced by the Centre and passed by the Parliament in 2019, aim to confer Indian citizenship to persecuted non-Muslim migrants, including Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, Buddhists, Parsis, and Christians who migrated from Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Afghanistan and arrived in India before December 31, 2014. 

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