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Academics, filmmakers, actors, West Bengal artists write to PM Modi, supporting CAA News – India

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KOLKATA (WEST BENGAL): A group of scholars, filmmakers, actors, artists and other professionals from West Bengal have written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, extending support for the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), which grants citizens citizenship persecuted minorities in Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan.

“We, the people of West Bengal, express our sincere gratitude and unreserved admiration from the deepest heart of our hearts to you for enacting the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and finally resolving this episode unbearable, which has been tormenting and afflicting the Bengali psyche and soul for the past seventy years, since the time of partition,” reads the letter, a copy of which was accessed by ANI.

Nine signatories — Anjana Basu, Prof Debashish Chowdhury, Arindam Chakraborty, Advocate Joydip Sen, Supriyo Bandyopadhyay, Anindya Pulak Banerjee, Milan Bhowmik, Sanjay Som and Rantidev Sengupta have confirmed to ANI that they have signed the letter along with others addressed al al Prime Minister, extending his support to the CAA.

“History bears witness to the fact that the partition has caused more pain and hardship to the Bengali people than any other. Some forward-thinking Bengali leaders and leaders in the past had foreseen the calamitous consequences of partitioning. His efforts wholeheartedly led to the creation of West Bengal. The long list of these shrewd personalities includes Sir Jadunath Sarkar, the historian RC Majumdar, the profs. Suniti Kumar Chattopadhyay, Dr. Meghnad Saha and, last but not least, Dr. Syama Prasad Mupadkhohyay,” adds the letter.

They praised the Prime Minister for the “human and historical step” given regarding the CAA and said it was a “basin moment” in Bengal’s history.

“This painful episode of our partition story and its continued suffering after partition, especially on the Bengal front, would have remained suppressed and victims neglected and marginalized through the relentless propaganda of the opposition, if not out for this human and historical step of his, making this a moment in our history,” the letter says.

They said the CAA issue was “finally conducted” under the leadership of the Prime Minister and claimed that it could not be met before because of the “parish policy of the voting bank.”

“The respected Prime Minister Lord, as you yourself have said several times, the demand for citizenship, for people persecuted for religious reasons, in neighbouring countries, is neither new nor recent. In fact, it began at the dawn of independence. Because of some reason or another, this demand was not being met, especially by those who were profated in their promises then,” the letter adds.

“After introspection, it is clear that the voting bank’s parish policy, which until recently triumphed over all other considerations, delayed the granting of citizens to these unhappy people. The leaders came in and went out to make nothing but make promises on this issue. But today that promise has finally been fulfilled under his leadership,” the letter says.

“It took seventy-two long years to confer a dignified life in West Bengal on those people whose right on this soil is second to none. We are with our hands bent and grateful to you, as we have been relieved of this ignominy and this promise that you have now fulfilled will empower and impart a dignified life to the Lakhs and Lakhs of the people in West Bengal,” the letter continues.

“CaA is finally a law contemplated with a complete constitutional sanction in response to the hopes and aspirations of these persecuted people. The collective blessings of millions of destitute, whose tears you have erased by this act of epoch, has immortalized you in the pages of history and in the hearts of the Bengali. We consider ourselves lucky to have you by our side,” the letter says.

The CAA or the Citizenship (Amendment) Act 2019 grants citizenship to Hindu, Sikh, Jain, Parsi, Buddhist and Christian refugees from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh who arrived in India on or before December 31, 2014.

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