Kerala has been inspiring other states to take stand against the dictatorial and unconstitutional laws being pushed on the Indian population. Today Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan wrote letters to 11 non-BJP chief ministers in the country to build unity among the states against the citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) that was passed in December last year.
Kerala was also the first state to pass a resolution demanding that CAA be scrapped. The resolution was passed on 31st December 2019. The CM cited that the act goes against the secular fabric fo the nation and would lead to ‘religion-based discrimination’. The resolution was passed by ruling as well as opposition parties except for the lone BJP MLA.
Vijayan has written letters to chief ministers of Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Delhi, Jharkhand, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Punjab, Puducherry, Rajasthan, and West Bengal. Bihar is the only state among the lot where the BJP is an alliance partner. The rest of the states are ruled by Congress, Congress-led coalitions and regional parties.
In his letter, CM Vijayan writes, “Apprehensions have risen among large sections of our society consequent to the Citizenship Amendment Act, 2019. The need of the hour is unity among all Indians to protect and preserve our cherished values of democracy and secularism. People from various cross-sections of the society irrespective of any differences they might have a need to stand united in preserving the basic tenets of our polity which form the cornerstone of Indian democracy.”
He points to the Kerala government’s decision to suspend all activities of the National Population Register (NPR) in the state and for taking up a resolution that ultimately received bipartisan support from all MLAs except the lone BJP MLA from Nemom, O Rajagopal.
“States which have the opinion that CAA should be repealed can also consider similar steps so that it will be an eye-opener to the proponents of the CAA and NRC,” writes Vijayan in the letter.
All the 11 chief ministers, including the recently-elected Hemant Soren of Jharkhand, have indicated their opposition to the NRC exercise. Massive protests have been held across the country by Muslim organizations, civil society groups, students and the public against CAA-NRC alleging that the move is discriminatory and violates articles 13 and 14 of the constitution.
Since the Citizenship Amendment act was passed in Rajya Sabha, there has been massive opposition against it from the people. People from all walks of life, all religions, young, old who came out to save the secular fabric of India defying prohibitory orders and extreme weather conditions in various parts of the country.
India has seen one of the biggest protests probably since the emergency days. The continuous protests have also put the home minister on a back foot for some time.