Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy on Monday, 23 December, said his state will not support the Centre's National Register of Citizens (NRC).
"The YSRCP government will not support the NRC at any cost," Jagan assured a crowd he was addressing in Kadapa district, amid cheers.
Last week, Deputy Chief Minister Amzath Basha told reporters that the YSRCP would not support any move that would be detrimental to the interests of the Muslim community in Andhra Pradesh.
Stating that he had spoken to Jagan, Basha said, "I urge all the people to exercise restraint. I spoke to the chief minister and I can assure you that whether it is NRC or any other Bill that comes up in Parliament that will hurt the community, the YSRCP will oppose it."
Reiterating their stand on Monday, Jagan said, "As our Deputy chief minister has already made it clear after speaking to me, we will not support the NRC and oppose it. I wish to assure all of you that we will not allow it in Andhra."
The statement by Jagan comes after his party had drawn flak for their decision to support the BJP-led Centre on the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) earlier this month, and helped it pass Parliament, to become the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA).
However, the YSRCP has not issued any clarification whether it will support the CAA or not.
The YRSCP had voted for the bill in the Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha. The Telugu Desam Party (TDP), which is in the opposition in Andhra Pradesh, had also backed the bill, while the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) had opposed it.
Hyderabad MP and All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief Asaduddin Owaisi had appealed to Jagan to withdraw his support.
"I request Jagan Mohan Reddy also to withdraw his support for the Centre. You should reconsider your decision (of voting in favour of CAA). I know you need to run a government but this is about India. Only when the country has a strong foundation can anyone run a strong government,” Owaisi had said last week while addressing a massive anti-CAA meeting in Hyderabad.
(Published in an arrangement with The News Minute.)