Amid the intense opposition by the Northeast states in India against the Citizenship Amendment Act, non-BJP states have come out in open against the contentious law. After West Bengal, Punjab and Kerala, looks like Maharashtra has also joined the list of the states opposing the legislation. On Friday, Maharashtra Minister and Congress leader Balasaheb Thorat was questioned over the implementation of the Citizenship Amendment Act. “We will follow the policy of our party's central leadership.” Thorat was quoted as saying by news agency ANI. Though Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray had spoken against the CAB before it was passed in the Rajya Sabha, there has been no official statement from the CMO regarding the implementation.
Many saw Shiv Sena walking out of the proceedings as middle path to placate its ‘frenemy’ BJP. Now, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath has also voiced concern over the implementation of the law. “Whatever stand the Congress party has taken on Citizenship Amendment Act, we will follow that, do we want to be a part of a process that sows seeds of divisiveness,” Nath was quoted as saying.
After West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee voiced her opposition to the Citizenship Amendment Bill, her Punjab and Kerala counterparts have also expressed their apprehensions regarding the contentious legislation. Much before Parliament’s nod to the bill, Mamata had made her stand clear about the bill. Addressing a gathering in Kharagpur, she had said, “Don’t be scared of CAB (Citizenship Amendment Bill). We are with you. As long as we are here nobody can impose anything on you.”
Punjab CM Amarinder Singh termed the bill an assault on India’s secular character and added Parliament had “no authority” to pass a law that “defiled” the Constitution. After the bill was passed in Rajya Sabha, he said that the central govt should have discussed the matter with all parties and tried to evolve a consensus.
“The Congress government in the state, on its part, would not let the legislation rip apart the secular fabric of the country, whose strength lies in its diversity”, Punjab CM added.
Moreover, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Thursday termed the bill Citizenship ‘unconstitutional’. “Kerala will not accept Citizenship Amendment Bill. Bill is unconstitutional.
Centre is trying to divide India on religious lines. This is a move to sabotage equality and secularism,” Pinarayi Vijayan said. “...with CAB, Sangh Parivar has used the majority they enjoy in the parliament to uproot the bedrock of Indian democracy & Constitution. It’s a rejection of secularism. BJP has made it clear that their main political plank is communalism. We must resist,” Vijayan said in a tweet.