Ever since the Citizenship Amendment Act was passed by both houses of the parliament, the opposition parties and left-liberal media has been running full-fledge propaganda against it. Most of the oppositions to the CAA are based on lies, aimed at creating baseless fear among Muslim citizens of India, but Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal crossed all limits of lies by claiming that every citizen, including Hindus, who don’t have own and parent’s birth certificates will have to leave India due to CAA.
The Delhi CM made this comment in a townhall session on NDTV moderated by Nidhi Razdan. Although the session includes the CM taking questions from the audience, a question on CAA was asked by the moderator herself. She said that entire country is debating the Citizenship Amendment Act, and asked Kejriwal to clarify his stand on the issue, adding that several opposition CMs have said that they will not implement the CAA and NRC in their respective states.
To this, first Kejriwal said that he does not understand the act at all. After that he proceeds to narrate an incident about meeting a person named Satish Pandey a few days ago, who has come to Delhi from UP or Bihar. “I asked him whether he has birth certificate issued by government, he said no. He said ‘I was born at home, and in those days birth certificates were not issued’. After that I asked what about your parents, he said when ‘I don’t have when how my parents will have it?’ After that I told him, now what will do? You will have to leave the country,” the Delhi CM said making a completely false statement and creating fear among people.
After that, he went to take a poll of people in the audience asking how many have own and parent’s birth certificates issued by the govt, and it turned out that only 15-20 people had it. “Out of around 1000 people sitting here, only 15-20 people have raised their hands, rest all will have to go away from the country”, he said. Nidhi Razdan ably contributed to this fearmongering by adding “whether they are Hindu or Muslim”, which was promptly agreed by Kejriwal.
He then added, for Hindus coming from Pakistan, the central government will make their papers, for Hindus in India, if they don’t have papers, they will have to leave the country. “Read the law if I am wrong”, he asserted. Kejriwal went on by saying so much love for Pakistani Hindus, but Indian Hindus will have to leave if they don’t have papers, what was the need of this law I don’t understand.
When Nidhi Razdan mentioned that the prime minister and home minister have clarified that CAA and NRC are not linked and the govt is not talking about NRC at present, Kejriwal asked her when will they talk about this. After that he added that govt is bringing 2 crore Hindus from Pakistan, and asked where will they be settled. He said that govt should think about economy and jobs, and not create controversy by making the law.
On this entire section on CAA, every word that Kejriwal uttered was a lie, starting from when he said he does not understand the law. It is not that he is misunderstanding the CAA, but it is clear that he is deliberately spreading lies.
The CAA is a special relaxation given to 6 minority communities facing persecution in 3 neighbouring Islamic countries, and it has absolutely nothing to do Indian citizens. Therefore, to claim that Indian citizens, including Hindus, will have to show their and their parent’s birth certificates due to the Act is absolutely false. The claim that Indians will have to leave the country for not having official birth certificate is laughable.
The CAA is for those people who have already entered before 31st December 2014, and they are already living in India. There is no question of bringing 2 crore Hindus from Pakistan under CAA as Kejriwal is claiming. Any person coming after the cut-off will have to go through the usual naturalisation process as per the Foreigners Act, they will not get the relaxation provided by CAA.
While Arvind Kejriwal was uttering these lies on CAA, instead of countering him, the moderator Nidhi Razdan instead chose to contribute to his fearmongering. Not even once she mentioned that CAA has nothing to do with Indian citizens. Even if it is accepted that Kejriwal was mixing up CAA and NRC, as a journalist she should have corrected him.
Moreover, the fearmongering about NRC is also totally baseless, as the central government has yet to make any official announcement on it, and nobody knows what will be its shape and how it will be implemented. Even in the recently updated NRC in Assam, people were not asked for their birth certificates. The government had published the legacy documents, which were the NRC of 1951 and the voter lists upto 1972. People had to find the names of their or their parents or grandparents etc in those documents, and rest of the family had to prove relationship with that person using a number of official documents, not just birth certificates.
More importantly, the NRC of Assam can’t be replicated in pan Indian level, as Assam has special provision in the Foreigners Act due to the Assam Accord, and the cut off date for citizens in Assam is different, 24th March 1972. The Assam Accord makes if mandatory to deport foreigners who have come illegally after that date, therefore it was necessary to identify such persons using the NRC.
But the NRC at national level will not have deal with these issues, therefore it will be a completely different exercise. Even if opposition parties want to oppose, they should at least wait till the government comes up with a proposal for it, instead of creating needless fear among people and instigate riots and violence in the name of protests.