Move Ahead Only After Correcting 'Errors' in NRC: RSS Advises Govt, Also Lends Support on Reservation
According to the sources present in the meeting, the NRC issue was discussed at length and concerns were raised on several genuine citizens being left out, especially those who settled in Assam from the neighbouring states.
File photo of RSS joint general secretary Dattatreya Hosabale. (Mohd Zakir via Getty Images)
Pushkar: The RSS on Monday said there are "some errors" in the final list of the National Register of Citizens in Assam and the government should remove those before moving forward, but asserted that the exercise is a welcome step.
Concerns were raised on the first day of the RSS' annual coordination meeting on Saturday over several genuine citizens being left out of the final list of NRC in Assam, majority of whom they claimed are Hindus, sources said.
BJP's general secretary Ram Madhav, who is also the party's in charge for all the seven northeastern states, has briefed the meeting about the NRC exercise carried out in Assam and its final list.
Addressing a press conference here on the final day of the Sangh's coordination meeting, RSS' joint general secretary Dattatreya Hosabale described NRC as a "complicated and complex issue" as names of many Bangladeshi illegal immigrants are in the voters list.
"There are about 35 to 40 lakh illegal immigrants from Bangladeshis who are now settled in Assam, and had been issued legal documents during previous governments, which have complicated and made the entire issue more complex," he said, adding that the NRC was discussed in the meeting.
Suggesting that before moving forward the government should rectify the NRC list, the RSS leader said, "NRC's final list is not a law...there are some errors and mistakes in it..government should move forward by removing those." However, he applauded the state BJP government for carrying out NRC exercise, saying they have to complete this task in a stipulated time after coming into power.
According to the sources present in the meeting, the NRC issue was discussed at length and concerns were raised on several genuine citizens being left out, especially those who settled in Assam from the neighbouring states. The leaders also expressed concerns claiming that majority of the 1.9 million people excluded are Hindus, they said.
The BJP has criticised the updated NRC list and said the government will bring in a legislation to safeguard Indian citizens if the Foreigners Tribunals deliver adverse judgements against the appeals. The final list of the NRC in Assam, published on August 31, left out over 1.9 million people.
Further talking about reservation, the RSS joint general secretary said that quota is required because there is social and economic disparity in society, and should continue till its beneficiaries feel it is needed.
Hosabale added that the organisation strongly feels that temples, cremation grounds and water reservoirs should be open for all and not restricted to any specific caste. "There is social and economic disparity in our society and therefore reservation is required...we totally support the reservation as mandated by the Constitution," he said.
Asked whether the RSS feels reservation should not continue indefinitely, Hosabale said it is for the beneficiaries of the system to decide. "Reservation should continue till its beneficiaries feel it is required," he said, clearing his organisation's stance on quotas.
A Dalit organisation, he said, had written to RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat applauding the Sangh's stand on ending discrimination in society. The RSS strongly feels and has been working towards the belief that temples, cremation grounds and water reservoirs should be open for all, he said.
Reservation was not on the agenda of the Sangh's coordination meeting and was not discussed. Over 200 delegates of 35 RSS affiliates attended the coordination meeting, the first after the Lok Sabha elections. Bhagwat recently suggested dialogue in a harmonious atmosphere between those who avail reservation benefits and those who don't.
More than 200 delegates of 35 RSS affiliates attended the coordination meeting, the first such after the Lok Sabha election. BJP working president J P Nadda, general secretary (organisation) B L Santhosh were among those present.
(With inputs from PTI)
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