JAIPUR: While six states have refused to implement the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, the Rajasthan Government has opposed it but is not yet clear whether it will implement it in the state or not.
The controversy over the Citizenship (Amendment) Act holds significant importance as there are more refugees in Rajasthan than in the other states opposing it. Currently, there are about five lakh Pakistan Hindu migrants in the state.
Political experts believe that though Congress has been opposing the bill at the Centre level, for Gehlot, it has become a difficult decision to decide whether his Government will eventually implement it or not in Rajasthan.
He was asked the question in Delhi on Friday regarding the implementation of CAB in Rajasthan.
"This is not going to be implemented in the entire country. This bill is not practical and is being introduced to divert people's attention from the real issues facing the country. After Kashmir, North East is burning where Rajasthanis also reside. Their relatives are concerned about their well being", he had said.
Working for Pakistan Hindu Migrants, NGO Seemant Lok Sanghathan says that there are about 5.5 lakh, Hindu Migrants, in the state. Many of them have already been given citizenship.
Most Hindu migrants from Pakistan are in Gehlot's bastion Jodhpur. Jaipur also has a significant number of migrants.
In Barmer and Jaisalmer, dozens of settlements have come up and migrants families are hopeful that they would become citizens of India after the Act was passed.
One of the reasons why politics have heated in Rajasthan over the issue is also that these migrants occupy 16 assembly constituencies.
Three refugees have contested the MLA elections so far. Tarun Rai Kaga has been a BJP MLA from Chauhatan. Jaisalmer, Barmer City, Jodhpur's Sursagar, Shiva, Chauhatan, Khajuwala, Kolayat and Anoopgarh assembly constituencies are influenced by them.
Congress has won most of these seats. Apart from that, there are some migrants from Bangladesh but the numbers are not clear.
If Gehlot opposes the implementation of the Bill in the state, BJP will make sure Congress is severely damaged because of the move.
"Congress-ruled states are talking unconstitutional things by refusing to implement the bill. States cannot refuse to implement this law of the Center. Even if the government in Rajasthan refuses to implement it, then BJP will protest against it", said Rajendra Rathod, Deputy Leader of Opposition.
However, it is only after the proposed rally in Delhi on Saturday against the policies of the central government, that the Gehlot government will decide whether to implement the bill or not.
According to sources, the Ministry of the state has written a letter to the centre and sought guidance regarding the implementation of the Bill.
Although it is certain that refusing to implement the new law will not be easy for the state government.