Midnapore (WB): West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday allayed fears among the people that NRC exercise will be carried out in the state.
Addressing an administrative meeting at Debra in West Midnapore district, Banerjee said it is shocking that people have commited suicide fearing that NRC would be implemented in the state.
“NRC will not happen in Bengal,” she said.
The chief minister had iterated on earlier occasions that NRC will not take place in West Bengal.
Government sources had claimed on Tuesday that four persons have committed suicide in fear of NRC so far, while four others had died while waiting in queues to procure the requisite papers.
Banerjee said that the state government’s programme to issue, replace and update digital ration cards, which was originally scheduled from September 9 to 27, will again commence from November 5 to November 30 “to help each and every citizen of the state.”
The announcement comes at a time when large queues are seen outside the offices of BDOs and borough offices in different parts of Bengal, besides at the civic body offices in the city to procure requisite documents. There are apprehensions among a large section of the people that NRC will be carried out in the state in future.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah had repeatedly said during the campaigning for the Lok Sabha elections that NRC would be implemented in Bengal which has evidentally trigerred the fear.
Banerjee said the state government will start the process of updating digital ration cards again after the festive season and there will be new ration cards in two colours.
There will be one set of digital ration cards for people who want to keep it for identity proof, while the second set of cards in a different colour will be for those who want to avail subsidised food items and also for identity proof, she said.
Banerjee cautioned people against middlemen while updating digital ration card at government offices in the districts.
She claimed that she had reports that some of the government officers in the districts are not following the directives of the secretariat.
“I have heard allegations that some BDOs have been harassing common people and are not following directives of the state government. This can’t go on,” Banerjee said.
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