Delhi Assembly passes resolution against NPR and NRC

The Delhi Assembly passed a resolution on Friday against the National Population Register (NPR) and the National Register of Citizens (NRC).

At the one-day special session, which was held to discuss the two issues, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal requested the Centre to withdraw them.

“Me, my wife, my entire cabinet don’t have birth certificates to prove citizenship. Will we be sent to detention centres?” he asked.

Kejriwal challenged Union ministers to show whether they had birth certificates issued by the government.

Addressing the assembly, chief minister Arvind Kejriwal said under the two processes citizens will be asked to prove citizenship by birth certificates, something that is not available with 90% of the people.

“Under the NPR and NRC, the public will be asked to prove their citizenship. Ninety percent of the people have no official birth certificate to prove this. Will everyone be sent to the detention centre? This fear is haunting everyone. My appeal to the Centre is to stop NPR and NRC,” Kejriwal said.

Kejriwal said even in Delhi’s assembly of 70 legislators, only nine had birth certificates.

He said on 20 June 2019, the President had clearly stated that “the central government has decided that NRC should be implemented” and on 10 December 2019, the home minister said in Parliament— “We are very clear on this that the NRC will be done”.

“Home minister said first CAA will come, then NPR and then NRC. All three laws are related to each other. They will raise questions on the citizenship of all the people of the country,” he added.

“Yesterday the home minister said no documents will be asked in NPR. He did not say documents will not be asked in NRC. Do not live in this misconception that NRC will not. They will get NRC done after NPR. The President and the home minister had made it clear that the NRC will remain,” he added.

The resolution adds that “in the interest of the nation, particularly when the economy is witnessing worst ever down slide and the unemployment is witnessing terrifying growth and with the threat of corona pandemic looming large, it invests all its energies and resources on real needs…rather than unnecessary issues like NPR/NRC”.

This comes against the backdrop of various states including Kerala, Punjab and Rajasthan passing resolutions to oppose the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) which was approved by the President in December. Opposition parties say the CAA, NPR and NRC, taken together, will adversely affect citizens.