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Widespread protest shocked BJP leadership

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A protester carries a placard against Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at a demonstration over India'

New Delhi: The BJP leadership has confessed that the widespread protest against the CAA was unexpected. Quoting senior BJP leaders, Reuters reported that the leadership has assessed that lack of proper consultation inside and outside the party and failure in convincing the people of the matter caused the protest to spread across the country.

Sanjeev Balyan, a union minister, told Reuters that he "really did not see the protests coming".

Three other BJP lawmakers and two central ministers, who spoke on condition of anonymity to the media, said they were mobilizing party supporters from all walks of life to start community dialogues and dispel discontent over the law and the NPR.

"I believe that the political math behind the clearance of this law was not taken into account," said one of the federal ministers, an apparent reference to lack of consultation with allies and opposition parties.

A minister said, "We are all in damage control mode," adding that the BJP and hardline Hindu allies have launched a campaign to explain that the law is not discriminatory.

The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) has also launched a movement across urban slums to counter opposition to the bill.

"The violent protests are not because the people were not properly informed about the new law, but because they were intentionally wrongly informed by forces with vested interests," Manmohan Vaidya, a senior RSS leader, told the media.

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