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Falaknuma: Friday sermons apprise people of Citizenship Amendment Bill, National Register of Citizens

Falaknuma: Friday sermons apprise people of Citizenship Amendment Bill, National Register of Citizens
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Highlights

With the anxiety levels rising among the Muslims following the passage of CAB (Citizenship Amendment Bill) in Parliament and in view of the possibility of rollout of the nation-wide NRC (National Register of Citizens) in the near future, mosques around the city have been urged to take up NRC and CAB awareness drive as part of Friday sermons.

Falaknuma: With the anxiety levels rising among the Muslims following the passage of CAB (Citizenship Amendment Bill) in Parliament and in view of the possibility of rollout of the nation-wide NRC (National Register of Citizens) in the near future, mosques around the city have been urged to take up NRC and CAB awareness drive as part of Friday sermons.

A group of city-based NGOs have come up with a plan to leverage the Friday congregations for prayers across the city to first create awareness in the masses about the new laws and policies on Citizen Amendment Bill (CAB) and National Register of Citizen (NRC) and continue to engage the citizenry through the Masjid for facilitating easy access to information and documentation in the future.

In the first phase, 30 Masjids in urban slums around Nawab Sahab Kunta, Vattepally, Jahanuma, Tadbun, Falaknuma and surrounding areas used the Friday congregation and read out information about CAB and NRC and what needed to be done on readying the documents as part of the a larger campaign that is aimed at sensitisation and empowerment of the economically weaker sections of the community.

"The focus of the discussion was on what documents may be asked and what needs to be kept ready by the citizens above 32, viz., place of birth/date of birth certificates, and for people between 15-32, documents proving date and place of birth and anyone document which has the name of father or mother. For those below 15 years, proofs may be asked about date and place of birth and any document which has either parent's name," said Mujtaba Hasan Askari of Helping Hand Foundation.

According to the NGO, the need for such awareness was felt in view of the high illiteracy rates amongst the economically weaker sections of the community and consequent poor understanding of the new laws and policies that the central government has come up with on the CAB and NRC.

"With illiteracy in the Muslims hovering around 42% across India and around the same range in Telangana State, it will be a huge challenge to help people understand the requirements and to procure bona fide documents that will be required for NRC," he pointed out.

While some socio-religious groups are organising protests against the passage of the CAB Bill, others in the community perceive that sensitization was the first step and the second step should be to enable and guide them in seeking the bona fide documents from the government at the appropriate time.

"The Friday prayers provide a platform for mass level communication, which should be leveraged to disseminate important and current issues facing the community, today it is NRC and tomorrow it could about education or health in the community" added Mujtaba.

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