BJP’s New Stance on NRC Is a Tactical Retreat: Prashant Kishor

JD(U)‘s Prashant Kishor asserted that the change in stance was prompted by agitations against CAA and NRC. 

2 min read
JD(U)‘S Prashant Kishor.

JD(U) National Vice-President Prashant Kishor on Thursday, 26 December, scoffed at the Centre's refrain that there have been no deliberations so far on a country-wide National Register for Citizens (NRC), calling the new stance a “tactical retreat”.

The poll strategist-turned-politician, whose party is an alliance partner of the BJP, asserted that the change in stance was prompted by the nationwide protests against the new citizenship law and the proposed NRC.

“The claim of ‘abhi toh NRC ki koi charcha hi nahin hui hai’ is nothing but a tactical retreat in the face of nationwide protest against CAA-NRC. It is a pause and not the full stop. Government could wait till SC judgment on CAA. A favourable court order, and the whole process will be back," Kishor tweeted.

Speculation that the CAA will be followed by the NRC had intensified in the wake of Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s remark during a debate on the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill in Parliament that "NRC aane wala hai" (NRC is on its way).

Kishor, who disapproved of his party voting in favor of the Bill, has asserted that the Act, which seeks to grant citizenship to non-Muslim refugees from three neighbouring countries, could spell trouble in combination with the NRC.

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, who is also the JD(U) president, faced with a possible diminution of his popularity among Muslims as a result of his party voting in favor of the Bill, last week asserted that NRC will not be implemented in the state – he was the first NDA CM to say so.

Kishor, for his part, has been demanding an "official announcement" from Congress President Sonia Gandhi that NRC will not be implemented in the states ruled by her party, holding that simply statements to the effect from respective chief ministers would not suffice.

Meanwhile, BJP leaders have sought to explain that anxiety over the NRC was premature as Prime Minister Narendra Modi, at a rally in New Delhi on 22 December, questioned why people were taking to the streets against a measure that was yet to be taken up for discussion in Parliament or the Union Cabinet.

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