CAA discriminatory, NPR is disguised NRC: Sonia Gandhi

Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi (PTI Photo)

Congress President Sonia Gandhi on Saturday said the updation of the National Population Register, planned by the Modi government, was a National Register of Citizens in disguise and asked Chief Ministers of party-ruled states to brainstorm on the issue and take a “wise and uniform decision”.

Addressing the meeting of the Congress Working Committee (CWC), Gandhi said the party was “inspired” by the “struggle” launched by students to defend the Constitution and oppose the implementation of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and declared that the party stood “shoulder to shoulder” with them in their fight for justice and dignity.

Gandhi also slammed Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah of making “provocative statements” and said that she was appalled at the police excesses and use of “brute force” in several towns of Uttar Pradesh and universities across the country.

“As the students protest gains momentum, it is clear that the government is digging in its heels... The situation in some states is alarming, turning the states into police states, notably in Uttar Pradesh and the Union Territory of Delhi,” she said at the meeting held at the AICC headquarters here.

The CWC demanded the withdrawal of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and an immediate stop to the process to update the National Population Register.

The “sinister purpose” of the CAA was to divide the Indian people of religious lines, Gandhi said adding that the government had hit upon the idea of the NPR after the “disastrous” results of the NRC exercise in Assam.

“Let us not be under any illusion that the NPR is a benign exercise. In form and content, NPR 2020 is a disguised NRC,” she said.

On the state of the economy, she said that the government had neither the wisdom nor the will to take measures to stop the downslide of the economy.

The CWC stressed that the nation required a “healing process” to restore people's trust and confidence. Congress said it was unfortunate that the Modi government did not believe in building a consensus to resolve national issues, but followed a policy of imposition and confrontation.

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