West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday dared the Centre to hold a United Nations monitored referendum on the Citizenship (Amendment) Act and NRC. She also said that if the majority of people do not support the Act and NRC in the referendum then BJP should step down from the Central government.
Speaking at a Trinamool Congress (TMC) rally against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, Banerjee also said that referendum should be conducted by a committee of experts from impartial organisations like the United Nations and the National Human Rights Commission. She said that no political party should be involved with the referendum.
“If you have the guts then don’t try to divide people by inciting riots. If you have the guts then hold a countrywide referendum monitored by the United Nations on the CAA and NRC issue. Let an impartial committee be formed with experts from the United Nations and Human Rights Commission... If the majority of people oppose it then promise you will resign,” said Banerjee.
The Chief Minister alleged that BJP has bought some skull caps for its workers who are will wear them during vandalising government property to malign a certain community.
Accusing BJP of making a false claim that Hindus have nothing to worry about the Citizenship (Amendment) Act and NRC the Chief Minister asked the how come more than 13 lakh Hindus were left out of the NC in Assam.
“They are saying that Hindus have nothing to worry about (the amended Citizenship Act). Then how come 13 lakh Hindus were left out of NRC in Assam?” said Banerjee.
She further alleged that BJP was trying to project the protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act and a Hindu versus Muslim conflict and urged people not to fall for any kind of provocation.
Banerjee condemned the detention of historian Ramchandra Guha by police in Bengaluru for staging protest against the Citizenship(Amendment) Act and NRC.
Reiterating her charge against Home Minister Amit Shah for his remark that Aadhaar is not a proof of citizenship Banerjee asked will only “BJP’s amulet” be considered as proof of citizenship.
Later in the day, West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar urged the Chief Minister to withdraw her remark on holding a referendum on the Citizenship (Amendment) Act.
".@MamataOfficial. I appeal CM Mamata Bannerjee to please withdraw her reported statement “Let there be an impartial organisation like United Nations or National Human Rights Commission hold a referendum to see how many people are in favour or against Citizenship (Amendment) Act"," tweeted Dhankhar.