The BJP-led central government is confusing people in the name of implementing the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), alleged West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee at Malda on Tuesday (January 31).
Blaming the BJP for trying to approach the Matua community as a friend in the name of the CAA, Banerjee also claimed that her party Trinamool Congress and she have been taking care of the people from this community, whose roots are in Bangladesh.
“In the name of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, they (Centre) are confusing people. We have been taking care of the Matuas for a long time, but when polls approach, the BJP goes to them, claiming to be their friends…screaming CAA,” Banerjee said at a government programme in Malda in West Bengal.
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The Matuas, originally hailing from East Pakistan (now Bangladesh), started migrating to West Bengal in the 1950s, mostly due to religious persecution back home.
The CAA facilitates the grant of citizenship to migrants belonging to Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi and Christian communities from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan.
But, as the rules under the Act have not been framed by the government yet, no one so far could be granted citizenship under it.
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Banerjee also accused the BJP-led central government of not releasing the state’s dues.
“You (Centre) owe over ₹1 lakh crore to Bengal, give us our dues,” she said without elaborating on the subject. The West Bengal CM had earlier alleged that the Centre was not releasing funds for the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee scheme.
Referring to river erosion mostly in the districts of Malda and Murshidabad of West Bengal, Banerjee said that the central government has “stopped looking into the matter”. “Our biggest challenge now is to arrest river erosion; the Centre is not taking care of it anymore. We are supposed to get ₹700 crore from them,” she added.