Chandigarh, Dec 20 (IANS) The representatives of nearly 1,500 refugee families of Punjab, who have been residing in the state for over decades appreciated the Centre’s efforts to bring in the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA).
The group of families was invited here on Froday by BJP leaders — former Union Minister Vijay Sampla and former media advisor to Chief Minister Vineet Joshi.
“The gathering of these families is a strong message to those people who are spreading rumours in the name of the CAA and NRC. I challenge these hooligans to come here and listen to what atrocities these families have faced in past,” Sampla told the media.
“No educated person, knowing the basis of this act, would support such kind of protest taking place in many cities,” he said.
Asking the students of colleges and universities to come forward and learn about this act, Sampla said religion has nothing to do with this act.
“There is no violation of Article 15 or 21. I don’t know for what reason these protest are taking place,” he said.
Sampla also slammed Punjab Chief Minster Amarinder Singh’s stand on not implementing the CAA in the state.
“I think he needs to understand the Constitution and its amended laws. It’s not the first time that some amendments were made. He must have forgotten that it was the Congress that brought it in 1972 and since then trying to get it amended,” he said.
Immigrant Daya Lal said he came to India two decades ago.
“I was 10 when my father came from Pakistan frontier. Our brothers, family members were killed and many of our sisters were taken away. We have been struggling to get Indian citizenship despite making our living here. We have asked to make certificates after every six months, our kids faces problem in getting admissions. We are around 300 families based in Jalandhar and nearby areas who have wandered from pillar to post to get a deserving status here,” he said.
Sundar Lal, Rajesh Kumar, Kasturi Lal, Sagar and Kesar Lal were the among others who reached in Chandigarh along with their family members.
“The protests across India is driven by political parties that did not know what we faced. There is not a single case of violence in Malerkotla or Qadian, where we have majority of Muslim brothers,” said Sundar Lal.
The BJP alliance partner Akali Dal has already announced its support on the Citizenship Amendment Act.
“We want all persecuted minorities seeking sanctuary in India to be given citizenship & equal rights. Unity in diversity is our greatest strength & I reiterated this in Parliament also,” Shriomani Akali Dal President Sukhbir Badal said in a tweet.