DEHRADUN: Uttarakhand has identified 200 Hindu refugees from Pakistan who will be granted citizenship under the newly passed Citizenship Amendment Act.
Chief Minister of Uttarakhand Trivendra Singh Rawat blamed the Congress for creating confusion and instigating people against the CAA.
"The Congress party is working on a divide and rule policy by using students for political gain. The Congress never passed a resolution for freedom and they also have problems with Vande Mataram," said the CM.
He also added that Muslims are not persecuted in Pakistan but Hindus are forced to convert adding that the percentage of Hindus have come down to 2.7% from 23% since 1947.
State government officials said that the process is on and soon the paperwork will be filed after due investigation.
Madan Kaushik, state cabinet minister, said, "We are committed to protecting minorities from these countries. Congress party has lost its chance to garner support of the people. Identification work for refugees is on and soon we will send the list to the central government."
Mostly residing in Haridwar, Dehradun and Udham Singh Nagar districts, a majority of these refugees cling to odd jobs and charity for survival.
They hope that becoming citizens of this country will enable them to live a life of dignity. They can apply for jobs and start their own businesses, say the now stateless people.
Nand Kishore (81) is happy as he hopes to get Indian citizenship. He was taken along by a Muslim landlord to Pakistan during partition but returned to India in 1974. He decided not to go back.
His family members have Indian citizenship but not him. Settled in Rudrapur of Udham Singh Nagar district, the father of six and grandfather of eight has applied for 25 extensions to his long term visa.
Procedures to deport him back to Pakistan were initiated in 2002 after his visa expired again but the decision was reviewed when he pleaded with Indian authorities after presenting proof.