As many as five foreigners have been asked to leave India for participating in anti-CAA protests, the government informed the Lok Sabha on Tuesday. The foreigners have been asked to leave on the ground that they violated their visa conditions by engaging in an activity that could be defined as political, sources said.
Responding to a question in this regard, Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Nityanand Rai said, “As reported by the Bureau of Immigration, five foreign nationals who violated visa norms by participating in the anti-CAA protests were asked to leave India.”
The amended citizenship law has triggered protests across the country. According to the new law, Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi and Christian immigrants who have come from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan will be given Indian citizenship with December 31, 2014 as the cut-off date.
The government also told the Lok Sabha on Tuesday that it was holding discussions with all States over the NPR exercise which is scheduled to begin along with the houselisting phase of the Census on April 1.
“The government is in discussion with the States having concerns in regard to the preparation of NPR. The demographic and other particulars of each family and individual are to be updated/collected during the exercise of updation of NPR. No document is to be collected during this exercise,” Rai said in his reply to a written question.
Home Ministry sources said the Central government is already reaching out to allay the apprehensions of States by meeting Chief Ministers critical of the exercise. Punjab, Kerala, West Bengal, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh are some of the non-BJP ruled states which have apprehensions about the NPR and are critical of the exercise.
As part of the Centre’s outreach, Registrar General and Census Commissioner Vivek Joshi recently met Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh and apprised him of the preparations for the Census and NPR. Punjab Assembly has adopted a resolution expressing its opposition to the CAA. Joshi, who will supervise the Census and NPR exercise, is expected to meet Chief Ministers of all states critical of the NPR, sources said.
Several states, including Kerala, have said they will cooperate with the Census exercise but not NPR.
Sources said the RGI is also looking at roping in celebrities to allay fears about the NPR exercise. The government is also asking various government departments to carry out an awareness campaign on NPR.
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