Stung by the scale of the anti-CAA agitation across the nation, the Centre has adopted a cautious approach over the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA).
The BJP was delivered a body-blow over the contentious law with its ally JD(U) rejecting the implementation of the National Register for Citizens (NRC) in Bihar. JD(U) leader and Bihar CM Nitish Kumar tersely rejected the NRC, saying: “Kaahe ka NRC? Bilkul laagu nahin hoga”. West Bengal CM and Trinamul Congress chief Mamata Banerjee had been leading the charge against the NRC and CAA, Odisha CM and BJD supremo Naveen Patnaik has also said “no” to the NRC.
On the backfoot with protests raging across India, the Centre is now getting into damage control mode. In what can be viewed as a softening of the aggressive stance the BJP leaders had been taking over the past few weeks, a home ministry official said Friday that the government was open to the idea of accepting suggestions on the CAA from those who were protesting against it. The speculation is rife that the government was looking at the option of accepting voter ID cards, Aadhaar, passports, and licences
to prove citizenship. For the poor, the government could possibly consider voter ID cards and government benefits being availed of by them. No official statement
has, however, yet been issued in this regard.
The home ministry has also delayed the notification of the new law, even after getting Presidential assent. The MHA has decided to wait since the issue “is in the apex court”.