Hours after the BJP's massive rally in Kolkata in support of the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), Chandra Kumar Bose, BJP vice president for West Bengal and grandnephew of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, raised questions against the law, asking why it does not include Muslims.
Urging the Narendra Modi government to remain “transparent”, Bose tweeted on Monday, “If #CAA2019 is not related to any religion why are we stating - Hindu,Sikh,Boudha, Christians, Parsis & Jains only! Why not include #Muslims as well? Let's be transparent.”
If #CAA2019 is not related to any religion why are we stating - Hindu,Sikh,Boudha, Christians, Parsis & Jains only! Why not include #Muslims as well? Let's be transparent— Chandra Kumar Bose (@Chandrabosebjp) December 23, 2019
In a subsequent tweet, he said, “Don't equate India or compare it with any other nation- as it's a nation Open to all religions and communities.”
The BJP leader said there is no harm in including Muslims because “if Muslims are not being persecuted in their home country they would not come” to India. “However, this is not entirely true- what about Baluch who live in Pakistan & Afghanistan? What about Ahwadiyya in Pakistan?” he said.
If Muslims are not being persecuted in their home country they would not come,so there's no harm in including them. However, this is not entirely true- what about Baluch who live in Pakistan & Afghanistan? What about Ahwadiyya in Pakistan?— Chandra Kumar Bose (@Chandrabosebjp) December 24, 2019
His dissent comes at a time when the BJP is going all out in support of the newly-enacted law and took out a massive support march in West Bengal on Monday.
On Monday, accompanied by senior BJP leaders, including the party's state unit president Dilip Ghosh and national general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya, BJP working president J P Nadda led a march from Subodh Mullick Square in central Kolkata to Shyambazar.
Addressing the rally to "thank" the Modi government on the new citizenship law, Nadda skirted the issue of nationwide NRC, days after advocating for it.
He said the amended law grants citizenship and does not take it away, as claimed by opposition parties. "It is unfortunate that Mamata Banerjee has always given priority to her politics over national interest. The TMC and other opposition parties are misleading people on the amended law," he said.
"They are only bothered about securing their vote bank rather than national interest. They are not bothered about pains and agony of the refugees who are coming to this country to save their lives and honour," he added.
Nadda also hit out at Banerjee for "inaction" over violence that rocked the state during protests against the citizenship law.
Asserting that the turnout is a proof of public support in favour of the CAA, Nadda said Mamata Banerjee might work against the interests of the masses but the people of the state are very much in support of the new law.
Taking a swipe at the opposition parties, Nadda said Manmohan Singh had in 2003 appealed to then Union home minister L K Advani to allow minorities from Bangladesh and Pakistan seek refuge in the country. "But now when our government has passed a law to do the same thing, they are opposing it."
The senior BJP leader claimed that Muslims have flourished in India, but Hindus have suffered torture in Pakistan.
The contentious law has been a major political flashpoint with Banerjee declaring that it will not be implemented in the state, inviting strong criticism from the BJP.
Slamming Banerjee for opposing central schemes, Nadda said just for the sake of scoring political points she didn't allow Ayushman Bharat and insurance policy for farmers to be implemented in Bengal.
"We removed oppressive triple talaq and gave freedom to Muslim sisters but she opposed that too. In her attempt to oppose the BJP, she is opposing each and every thing that is in interest of the nation," he said.