Suggested an opinion poll’: Mamata makes U-turn on UN referendum remark

Making a U-turn over her remark demanding a UN referendum on the Citizenship Amendment Act and nationwide NRC, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee clarified that she had only suggested an opinion poll be conducted by impartial experts of the country, the process for which could be observed by the United Nations, reported PTI.

“I am proud of my country… I have full faith on my countrymen. What I had said was that a gana vote (opinion poll) be conducted by a panel of impartial experts and members of national human rights commission. It can be observed by the UN,” she was quoted as saying by PTI. Mamata had challenged the Narendra Modi government to go for a UN-monitored referendum on the amended Citizenship Act and the proposed NRC across the country.

Banerjee, while addressing a press conference in Kolkata, also urged the PM to withdraw the “anti-people” law and plans to implement nationwide NRC. “It is not about any political victory or defeat. It is matter of our country… Withdraw CAA and NRC,” she said in her appeal to Modi.

Meanwhile, Governor Jagdeep Dhankar appealed to the chief minister to withdraw her statement to this effect arguing that such assertions are bound to send wrong signals to people.

The governor said he is against any Indian citizen trying to take “dispute resolution” to any outside body, including the United Nations. “An authority should not seek such an intervention… this does not do any honour to our country,” he said on the sidelines of an event organised by Assocham.

Yesterday, the Trinamool Congress chief has also alleged that BJP workers in skull caps were fomenting trouble and damaging public property to malign Muslims as “they want to make the protest against the citizenship law and NRC a fight between Hindus and Muslims”.

Thursday’s rally was Mamata’s fourth one in as many days in Kolkata against the new law and the proposed NRC. Since Monday, she has been holding protests every day crisscrossing the city and culminating in a rally.