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Tripura to be first NE state to implement CAA as CM Saha says will implement Centre’s directive

First Published: 17th May, 2024 18:39 IST

The CPIM and Congress, have condemned this decision and said that the government has political intentions in it's mind behind bringing Citizenship Amendment Act.

Tripura is preparing to implement the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), as announced by Chief Minister Manik Saha, despite opposition parties expressing appehensions that it might lead to increased communal tensions.

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of a blood donation camp at a mosque on Friday, the Tripura CM was asked about Tripura’s stance on the CAA. In his response, CM Saha said, “Now whatever directions have come from the Centre, of course we are going to implement.”

The Tripura government has reportedly instructed all District Magistrates to form committees and designate officials to process applications received under the CAA. The process includes appointing officials for the State Level Empowered Committee and District Level Committee.

On the other hand, opposition parties, including the CPIM and Congress, have condemned this decision.
They argue that implementing the CAA will alter the state’s demographic pattern, particularly reducing the tribal community’s ratio and will lead to renewal of communal tensions between the two communities.

Opposition leader and Tripura CPIM secretary Jitendra Choudhury reacting on the issue said, “Right from the beginning we were against the CAA and even when it was a Bill also. I personally was the then presiden of the Gana Mukti Parishad and filed a writ in Supreme Court, waiting for the hearing. It is not only for Tripura, but also for the entire Northeastern region, because this region has already suffered a huge influx. Here in Tripura, the majority have now become the minority. That is the past history. Now whatever our size, whatever our population, we agreed to co exist and maintain our faith. In this situation while some sort of brotherhood, friendship and understanding has developed, now bringing CAA will further provoke influx from Bangladesh. Everday there are incidents of the illegal migration from Bangladesh. Even Rohigyas are also passing through Tripura to other parts of the country. It (CAA) will further invite jeopardy, further political turmoil, so the Central government should not hurry on this matter.”

“The CAA notification was issued on the day of the verdict for electoral bonds only to divert that issue, to hide the ugly face of the BJP, ” Choudhury further said.

On the other hand, Congress leader Sudip Roy Barman sharing his thoughts said, “It’s not that we do not feel the oppression that is taking place against the religious minorities in Pakistan, Afghanistan or Bangladesh, but this (CAA) cannot be the solution. To issue Indian citizenship to those foreigners, who are religious minorities in those countries, that cannot be the base of issuance of citizenship certificate. It will be a never ending process, once it commences. Now they (Centre) have notified, those religious minority people living in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh etc, those who have settled down or come to India on or before December 31, 2014, they will be given the Indian citizenship. This is bound to encourage those oppressives in those foreign countries to make a mayhem against the religious minorities who are still living there. It is giving a wrong signal to the fundamentalist forces in those foreign countries, to furthermore torture and oppress those religious minorities.

The central government has done all these (issue notification, giving away certificates) keeping an eye on the electoral benefits forgoing the interests of the country and it’s countrymen. So let’s keep our fingers crossed, we are aware that the Government of Tripura too is going ahead with the CAA. They want to extract political mileage out of it.”

On Wednesday the Centre granted citizenship under the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Act for the first time to 14 people, two months after rules were notified for the contentious law that omitted Muslims from neighbouring countries under its ambit.

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