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Maharashtra too shall stall implementation of Citizenship Act: Balasaheb Thorat

Though there has been no reaction from Shiv Sena’s side, questions are being asked whether the party that supported the bill in Lok Sabha would avoid its implementation in Maharashtra.

Published: 13th December 2019 06:40 PM  |   Last Updated: 13th December 2019 06:40 PM   |  A+A-

Maharashtra Congress president Balasaheb Thorat

Maharashtra Congress president Balasaheb Thorat. ( File Photo )

By Express News Service

MUMBAI: Maharashtra too shall join the non-Congress governments in the country by opposing implementation of amended Citizenship Act, revenue minister Balasaheb Thorat has said.

Though there has been no reaction to this from Shiv Sena’s side, questions are being asked whether the party that supported the bill in Lok Sabha would avoid its implementation in the state.

“We will follow the policy of our party’s central leadership,” Thorat said on being asked if Maharashtra will implement the Citizenship Amendment Act.

Earlier in the day, the other Congress minister in the state cabinet, Dr Nitin Raut, too had said that the implementation of the newly amended Citizenship Act would be stalled in the state.

The Shiv Sena, however, hasn’t reacted to the statements by the Congress ministers. When asked about it, a senior spokesperson of the party said that Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray will explain the party’s stand over the issue in due course.

ALSO READ | Citizenship Bill: Spontaneous stir plunges Assam into chaos

Punjab, Kerala and West Bengal have already declared that they won’t implement the amended Citizenship Act, while Madhya Pradesh and Chhatisgarh have indicated that they too aren’t likely to implement it.

Capt Amrinder and P Vijayan had described the act as “unconstitutional” and called it an attempt of yet another partition on a religious basis while declaring their decision to not implement the act.

However, Maharashtra is yet to make any official announcement in this regard.

The Shiv Sena had supported the bill in Lok Sabha in “National Interest” but changed its stand after pressure from Congress central leadership and abstained from voting in Rajya Sabha.

While Congress hopes to keep the Shiv Sena under pressure over the issue, whether the Shiv Sena tolerates the pressure is a question.

ALSO READ: Kerala UDF leader Ramesh Chennithala to move SC case against Citizenship Amendment Act

The fortnight-old government of Congress, NCP and Shiv Sena is already facing several internal issues including the portfolio allocation.

The NCP is not happy with the current portfolio allocation and has called it “temporary”. Under the current arrangement, the Shiv Sena and the Congress have got all the plum, influential departments.

Also, the Shiv Sena has got the biggest share with 18 departments while the Congress and the NCP have only 15 each.

The NCP hopes to resolve all these issues along with the cabinet expansion post the week-long winter session of the assembly which will begin on Monday. Congress has the speaker of the house though it has the lowest numbers in the house.

The Act will grant Indian citizenship to refugees from Hindu, Christian, Sikh, Buddhist and Zoroastrian communities Plans to launch a civil disobedience movement to protest controversial Bill.

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