The BJD Tuesday said that the Odisha government will not seek information about the place of birth of parents in the National Population Register as part of its earlier decision to oppose a National Register of Citizens (NRC).
Party president Naveen Patnaik had earlier stated that the Odisha government supported the CAA but is opposed to the NRC. BJD leaders had said that the party “sees NPR as the first step to NRC”.
“In NPR, we have two objections. In 13(2) of the NPR (questionnaire), respondent is supposed to be asked about where parents were born. The Centre has said it is optional. So it will not be asked in Odisha,” BJD’s parliamentary party leader in Lok Sabha Pinaki Misra told journalists on Tuesday.
“In this Census, enumerate SC, ST and OBC. They are a very important constituent who are being left out and their numbers need to be known,” Misra said. “The CM has emphasised that in caste category, OBC should be added along with ST and SC. This is very unfortunate that the OBC enumeration has either not been done or not declared in Census 2011. It has not been done likely because the column was not present in the last Census.”
Hours after Misra’s statement, senior BJP leader and Union Minister Pratap Sarangi said it is essential for everyone to provide information on his or her forefathers’ origin during the update of the NPR as it is linked to national security.
“I think the information on the forefathers of individuals is essential during NPR update. People may take benefits here after coming from Pakistan or Bangladesh by keeping their origin a secret… This may create problems in future. As it is linked to national security, there should be no compromise in this front. This is my opinion,” the Union minister of state for animal husbandry, dairying and fisheries and MSME told reporters.
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