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No question of NRC in Bihar, says Nitish Kumar

THE ASIAN AGE. | NAYEAR AZAD
Published : Jan 14, 2020, 2:03 am IST
Updated : Jan 14, 2020, 3:06 am IST

In his speech, Mr Kumar also emphasised the need for caste-based census in the country.

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar (Photo: PTI)
 Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar (Photo: PTI)

Patna: Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar on Monday said that the National Register of Citizens will not be implemented in the state. “There is no question of implementing NRC in Bihar. The exercise was confined to Assam as part of the accord signed by Rajiv Gandhi government. I don’t think there is any need to implement NRC anywhere else in the country. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has also clarified about the issue”, the chief minister said.

Mr Kumar, who has been facing flak from the Opposition in Bihar for extending support to Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) in Parliament, said in the state Assembly that he was willing to have a debate on various issues, including CAA.

Sources said that questions were also raised because most of his party leaders have been speaking openly about the issue but the chief minister had been silent on them.

Mr Kumar’s categorical remarks on NRC may cause unease among some BJP leaders who have been urging Prime Minister Narendra Modi and home minister Amit Shah to implement the exercise in other parts of the country, including Bihar.

In his speech, Mr Kumar also emphasised the need for caste-based census in the country. He said, “Caste-based census has not been done since 1930. Demand regarding the issue was also raised in 2010 but data collected were never released”.

He made these statements during the special session of the state Assembly which was convened on Monday to ratify the Constitution amendment bill which proposes to extend SC/ST quota in Parliament and state Assembly for another 10 years.

The JD(U), which supported the CAB in the Parliament, has been worried after political leaders including several from his party opposed the CAA and NRC. Two prominent JD(U) leaders — Prashant Kishor and Pavan Verma — have been urging the chief minister not to implement the exercise in Bihar.

According to political analysts here, the Opposition parties especially the RJD and the Left have been talking about using the issue against Nitish Kumar and his party during the Assembly polls which are scheduled to be held by the end of this year. Analysts feel that the JD(U) has to weigh its position carefully in order to keep its secular vote bank intact in the state.

Tags: nitish kumar, national register of citizens