Hyderabad: A delegation of Muslim leaders led by All India Majilis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief Asaduddin Owaisi called on Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao on Wednesday, urging him not to allow work on the National Population Register (NPR) in the state.
Emerging from the meeting, Owaisi described it as "positive" and said they informed Rao that the NPR was the first step towards the National Register of Citizens (NRC). "I am confident he will give a positive decision. We have demanded that the Telangana government put a stay on NPR," he said.
Owaisi said Rao has been "sympathetic" towards their cause and has sought two days to inform them of the ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi's (TRS) stand.
In the meeting that took place at Rao's residence Pragati Bhavan, the leaders of the United Muslim Action Committee, an umbrella grouping of Muslim organisations, emphasised how the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), NPR and NRC are interlinked matters.
"We have informed the chief minister about it. We urged him to stay implementation of the NPR on the lines of the Kerala government. We gave the order copy of Kerala. The chief minister told us he is thinking he will talk to like-minded parties. And if necessary he will call for a public meeting with the like-minded parties," Owaisi said.
He also claimed that according to a Right to Information Act (RTI) query, only 29% of the population in Telangana had birth certificate.
Owaisi said a meeting will take place on December 27 addressing these issues and will likely see the participation of several parties, including the TRS and Communist Party of India (CPI).
Amid the protests over the NRC and the CAA, the CPI(M)-led Left Democratic Front (LDF) government in Kerala on Friday said it has ordered a stay on all activities in connection with the NPR, scheduled early next year in the state, considering "apprehensions" of public that it would lead to NRC.
Kerala is the second state after West Bengal to have ordered a stay on NPR activities in the wake of the protests over CAA and the contentious NRC.
The Centre on Tuesday approved nearly Rs 12,700 crore for carrying out the Census 2021 and the NPR and made it clear that NPR has no relation with the NRC.
(With PTI inputs)