MNS chief Raj Thackeray has come forward to support the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the proposed National Register of Citizens (NRC).
Addressing a gathering of thousands of Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) activists in Mumbai, Thackeray said that a befitting reply would be given to rallies being held against the CAA and the NRC, and said: “a morcha will be answered with a morcha, a stone with a stone and a sword with a sword”.
The MNS took out a massive rally in support of CAA, thousands of people have come to join the rally from outside Mumbai. Thackeray’s move comes at a time when the nation is witnessing violent protests against CAA in many parts of the country.
Before joining the rally, Thackeray, wearing a saffron armband, first visited the famous Siddhivinayak temple in Prabhadevi, accompanied by his wife Sharmila and son Amit. Later, Thackeray along with thousands of party workers, who were in saffron t-shirts, began “Mahamorcha” (mega march) on foot from Hindu Gymkhana in order to respond to violent protests being held by protesters against CAA.
Addressing the gathering at Azad Maidan, the MNS chief said, “Today, anti-CAA and anti-NRC protests were given a befitting reply with this protest rally of the MNS. But let me warn you, next time morchas will be answered with morchas. And if you continue with your drama, stones will be answered with stones and swords with swords”.
Thackeray, who was against the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the 2019 Lok Sabha election, had extended his support to the CAA and the NRC. “I don’t understand why Muslims are protesting against the CAA and the NRC. Who was going to evict those who are living in India since their birth?” Thackeray asked. To whom are you (anti-CAA and anti-NRC protesters) trying to show your power, and why?” he said.
He said that the CAA grants citizenship to those who have come to India after facing religious atrocities in neighbouring countries Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh. He further said illegal immigrants should be ousted from the country. He said that the law should be implemented soon across the nation.
“The issue of infiltrators is as important as that of drinking water, education and health. Pakistani and Bangladeshi infiltrators should be thrown out from the country, and there shouldn’t be any compromise on the issue,” he told the gathering.