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Jaitley pens blog on NRC quoting Mamata's 2005 speech: Sparks debate


New Delhi, Senior BJP leader and Union Minister Arun Jaitley has penned a blog on high profile NRC issue and among other things refers to Mamata Banerjee's 2005 speech where in Trinamool Congress supremo describes infiltration as a 'serious matter'. Referring to Ms Banerjee's August 4, 2005 speech, the Union Minister says, the West Bengal Chief Minister had then said that the "infiltration in Bengal has become a disaster now". "You can see the Bangladeshi as well as the Indian names in the list. I have both the Bangladeshi and the Indian voters list. This is a very serious matter," Mr Jaitley quotes Mamata Banerjee of having said so in 2005. Lashing out at Ms Banerjee and also Congress president Rahul Gandhi for their latest stance on the NRC row, Mr Jaitley wrote: "Leaders like Rahul Gandhi and Mamata Banerjee must realise that India’s sovereignty is not a play thing. Sovereignty and citizenship are the soul of India. Imported vote banks are not".A lawyer himself, Mr Jaitley makes a comparison on the constitutional position between Art 19 and Art 21and says there should be confusion between the two as they with 'distinct' purposes. While Article 19 - available to only bonafide citizens strictly - guarantees the right to move freely throughout the territory of India and to reside and settle in any part of territory of India,he said adding the Article 21 is available to any person – 'citizen and non-citizen alike' and this gives an individual to life and liberty. Essentially, this is human right but that does give a non-citizen the right to move throughout the territory of India or to reside or settle in any part or territory in India -- as has been often spoken about infiltrators. Joining issue with Arun Jaitley on the issue of sovereignty and secularism, Trinamool leader Derek O' Brien tweeted saying "Sovereignty without doubt is the soul of India, but secularism is the inner conscience of India. Without one, the other is meaningless. And citizenship is a fundamental right, not a gift or toy that is handed over or taken back by BJP trolliticians". Mr O' Brien has been also countered by another BJP leader and Union Minister Babul Supriyo, who also took to the micro blogging site and tried to target 'appeasement' politics of Trinamool Congress. "If Secularism is the Inner Conscience in India brother, then everyone will@agree that you & your TMC Ideologues have no conscience because Appeasement Politics is and will remain the mainstay of your Politics," tweeted Mr Supriyo, Asansol MP. In his blog posted on Facebook, Mr Jaitley also writes "Though Mrs. Indira Gandhi and Mr Rajiv Gandhi took a particular position in 1972 and 1985 for the deletion and deportation of foreigners, Rahul Gandhi takes a contrarian position and his party turns turtle. Similarly, the BJP ally of 2005, Ms Mamata Banerjee, took a particular position. As a federal front leader, she now talks to the contrary. Can India’s sovereignty be decided by such fickle minds and fragile hands?"

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