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CAA-NRC against poor, oppressed: Activists

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Activists including Umar Khalid, Harsh Mander, Medha Patkar, Teesta Setalvad, Yogendra Yadav and others at a press conference in Mumbai on Monday

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Mumbai: Several activists assembled under the banner of 'We The People' in Mumbai on Monday and condemned the Centre for the Citizenship Amendment Act and proposed National Register of Citizens exercise, which they said was "divisive" and against the poor and oppressed.

Speaking at a press meet, activist and former student leader Umar Khalid accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of "lying" on NRC.

Addressing a rally in Delhi on December 22, the PM had said, "Since my government first came to power in 2014, I want to tell 130 crore countrymen, there has never been a discussion on this NRC, which was done only in Assam due to a Supreme Court order".

Khalid said the National Population Register (NPR), an exercise likely to begin in April next year, was linked to the NRC.

"I strongly condemn PM Modi's statement during his December 22 rally in which he said his government had not spoken about NRC. NPR and NRC is linked. This government is playing with the sentiments of the people," he said.

Khalid said police had falsely registered cases against "30,000 people" in Uttar Pradesh for anti-CAA protests, including against some who were in the Gulf at the time.

The Uttar Pradesh government has killed 20 innocent people (those who died during anti-CAA protests), he alleged.

Swaraj India president Yogendra Yadav said freedom of speech was guaranteed for the people of the country, and they have been coming out on the roads to oppose CAA, NRC.

CPI(M-L) politburo member Kavita Krishnan said NRC and CAA was against minorities, Dalits and Adivasis.

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