Lucknow, Jan 2 (IANS) The BJP has hit back at Samajwadi Party (SP) President Akhilesh Yadav’s criticism of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), saying that he should spend a month in Pakistan to understand the atrocities being faced by the Hindu minorities there.
“Akhilesh should stay in Pakistan for a month and pray in Hindu temples. Only then he will get first-hand experience of the atrocities committed against the Hindus,” Uttar Pradesh Bharatiya Janata Party President Swatantra Dev Singh told reporters in Mathura on Wednesday.
While replying to a question on Yadav’s refusal to fill up a form for the National Population Register (NPR), Singh said: “There is nothing wrong with the NPR. It only asks for everyday documents such as the Aadhaar card and driving licence, even confirmation by three neighbours, to establish that the person is a resident of the area. But some political parties are making an issue of it.”
He added that the CAA would not affect the country’s poor, and accused Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra of “misleading” the people.
“Priyanka visited victims of violence in Uttar Pradesh with the sole purpose of creating a ruckus. The CAA was amended with the people’s best interests in mind.”
Singh reiterated that the law was not aimed at discriminating against any community.
“Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah are trying to ensure a respectable life for people subjected to atrocities in Pakistan through the CAA. Because of the negative messages being circulated by the Congress, SP and the Bahujan Samaj Party, neither Hindus nor Muslims will vote in their favour now.”
He also asked the anti-CAA protesters, including students of the Jawaharlal Nehru University and Jamia Millia Islamia, to read up on the law before condemning the Central government.
The CAA, for the first time, makes religion the test of citizenship in India.
The government says it will help minorities from three Muslim-dominated countries — Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, — get citizenship if they fled to India because of religious persecution before 2015.
Critics say it is designed to discriminate against Muslims and violates the secular principals of the constitution.