New Delhi, Aug 14: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday launched a scathing attack on Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief Amit Shah over the National Register of Citizens (NRC) and asked if his parents have their birth certificates. Speaking at the state secretariat after meeting a delegation from United Bengali Forum, who had come from Assam to highlight their plight, the West Bengal CM said that the BJP has an anti-Bengali stand and now “they are planning to strengthen their base in Bengal”. Also Read - Cyclone Amphan: As CM Mamata Faces Protests, Power Restored in Kolkata And Other Districts
“I want to ask Amit Shah does his mother and father have birth certificates? If you ask me, I do not have my parent’s birth certificates. Would Swami Vivekananda have the certificates? Atal ji is ill now, so I cannot ask him, but I wish I could ask him whether he has all the certificates? One family can keep the record, not all. I belonged to a backward family, certificates were not maintained.,” Banerjee said, further posing a question, “Would Gandhiji’s family have certificates?” Also Read - Please Have Patience, Mamata Urges People as Protests Break Out Across Bengal After Cyclone Amphan
Further attacking the government for leaving out more than 40 lakh people in the Assam NRC final draft, Banerjee said Indian citizens are being harassed in Assam in the name of NRC and they are being robbed of their freedom. “The issue isn’t about Hindu or Muslim It’s about citizenship. People have been left out because of their language. BJP leaders are thumping their chest to justify this NRC,” she was quoted as saying by news agency ANI. Also Read - Cylone Amphan: Bengal Governor Laments 'Lack of Contingency Plan', Welcomes Move to Request Army's Help
“Of the total 40 lakh, 25 lakhs are Bengali Hindus, 13 lakhs Bengali Muslims and 2 lakh Nepalis, Biharis and others. I have shown you so many documents. People in Punjab and Pakistan speak the same language. People in Bengal and Bangladesh speak the same language. Isn’t Hindi and Urdu widely spoken in the country? If you do not like a particular community, you cannot spread hatred like this. Hasina ji (Bangla PM) is welcome, others not? Didn’t Bengal participate in the freedom struggle? What’s wrong in speaking the Bangla language?” she said.
Slamming the saffron party over NRC, she said that fake cases are being registered against the people who have been left out from the NRC Assam list. “They are being harassed,” she said, claiming, “1200 people are already in a detention camp”. “Why are 400 companies of security forces being stationed in Assam?” she asked. Asking the government to be “practical”, she said, “It may be applicable for local elections. But, if tomorrow there is no stability and the central government falls, how will the state government and central government go for elections again every time.”
Reported by Pooja Mehta, ZMCL