'No Question Of Doing It': Mamata Banerjee On Detention Camps In Bengal For Illegal Immigrants
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said that there is no possibility of detention centres coming up in the state on the lines of such camps for keeping illegal foreigners being set up in states like Assam and Karnataka.
“There is no question of detention camps. They have to do it through the state government, but we are not going to do that. You can be rest assured about it. There will be no detention camp in Bengal,” she said. The Chief Minister said the NRC exercise could be undertaken in Assam as it was part of the Assam accord, 1985.
The Accord was signed by the then Congress-led Central government in the presence of late prime minister Rajiv Gandhi and the leaders of the All Assam Students Union and All Assam Gana Sangram Parishad, who had spearheaded a six-year-long movement from 1979 to 1985 seeking detection and deportation of illegal Bangladeshis.
Her remarks opposition detention camps in West Bengal came after state unit secretary of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) Surya Kanta Mishra said that should the Centre try to build detention camps in the state, they would lead the people to demolish the structures.
Banerjee said the NRC would not happen in Bengal as "we run the government here". "They could carry out such an exercise in Assam, as the matter was a part of the Assam Accord of 1985, and because the state has a BJP government. In this state, we run the government," she added.
Further in her address, the Trinamool Congress (TMC) chief also said that her party has opposed the Citizenship Amendment Bill in Parliament as such things should not be done on the basis of religion. Banerjee said the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB), if passed, would render people as foreigners for six years.
"So Indians, and particularly Bengalis, will become foreigners for six years. What will you do with such people for six years? And then, what will happen?" she said.
The CAB provides for granting Indian citizenship to minorities in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan after an aggregate period of residence or service of a Government in India for "not less than six years".
(With agency inputs)
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