The West Bengal Assembly on Friday passed a resolution opposing the National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Assam and ruling out any such exercise in West Bengal.
The resolution tabled under Rule 185 of Rules of Procedures of Conduct of Business of the House got the backing of members ruling Trinamool Congress and opposition Left Front and the Congress. The BJP was the only party that opposed the resolution that sailed through after a three-hour debate.
On August 31, the final NRC list in Assam was published, from which over 19 lakh people were excluded.
Participating in the debate, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Baenrjee said the NRC has no acceptance in her state. “We do not accept the NRC. This exercise will never take place in Bengal.
Banerjee said she has spoken on the issue with Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, who has opposed any such exercise in his state.
Banerjee said the NRC was a fallout of the Assam Accord of 1985, but there were no such agreement in Bengal.
She referred to the detention centres being constructed in Assam, and said: “They are coming up with a grand jail to house those excluded from the NRC final list”. The resolution termed the exercise “inhuman and autocratic”.
Supporting the resolution, the lawmakers called the NRC exercise “anti-Bengali” and gone through with a political motive by the Bharatiya Janata Party.
Trinamool legislators from bordering districts of Cooch Behar and Alipurduar complained that girls from the district married into Assam have been left out of the list.
Left Front Legislature party leader Sujan Chakraborty said the NRC was an attack on the poor people who did not possess the documents.
All India Forward Bloc MLA Ali Imran Ramz termed the resolution historic and a proof that “Bengal is secular and will remain secular”.
Opposing the motion, Leader of BJP legislature party Manoj Tigga claimed Banerjee had raised the issue of “infiltration” from Bangladesh into Bengal as an opposition leader in 2005 in Lok Sabha and she had stormed out Speaker Somanth Chatterjee did not allow a debate.
He said there was need for NRC in Bengal.