VHP. Representational image | Facebook
A VHP rally | Representational image | Facebook
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New Delhi: The Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) is all set to launch an awareness programme on the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) by the end of the month and has decided to set up verification camps to help refugees from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan to apply for Indian citizenship.

“The camps will be set up across the country by the end of the month once the rules are notified by the government. Our functionaries will help refugees fill up the documents, get their documents verified and help them in whatever way we can,” said Vinod Bansal, national spokesperson of the VHP.

The Citizenship Amendment Act proposes to make non-Muslim illegal migrants of six communities — Hindus, Christians, Sikhs, Parsis, Jains and Buddhists — from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh eligible for Indian citizenship. It has been criticised for excluding Muslims.

According to a senior RSS functionary, the Citizenship Amendment Act is likely to benefit more than 1.5 crore people in the country.

With violent protests taking place in Assam and other parts of the country, RSS functionaries claim the impact of the citizenship Act will be felt more in West Bengal than Assam. Keeping this in mind, a majority of the camps will be set up in West Bengal for “Hindu” refugees.

Bansal further said that the RSS-affiliated organisation has helped 8,000 refugees get citizenship in India. “We have helped the refugees in making their claims and they got citizenship rights in the past few years. We will be launching a special drive for CAA,” he added.

Also read: ‘Face of Assam protest’ Zubeen Garg has message for Modi, Shah — don’t treat us like dustbins 

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‘Have been helping refugees with basic facilities’ 

According to another VHP functionary, the organisation is already in touch with persecuted minorities including Hindus, Sikhs and Jains among others and are helping them in getting basic facilities at the camps that they are residing in.

“In the national capital itself, we have been helping the refugees in getting basic facilities at Majnu Ka Tila among other places,” said a VHP functionary. “For instance, we have been helping them with medical issues, getting them a job. We have a dedicated team that has been monitoring them and similar camps have been set up across the country too.”

The VHP had earlier termed the violent protests against the citizenship Act as “anti-national motivated condemnable act by pseudo-secularist vested interests”.

“There is no harm to any Indian by deporting foreign infiltrators from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan,” said Milind Parande, international general secretary of the VHP.

Also read: NIA arrests RTI activist Akhil Gogoi amid Assam unrest, charges him under amended UAPA 


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