Published On: Mon, Feb 19th, 2024

West Bengal CM writes to PM over ‘deactivation’ of Aadhaar cards

New Delhi: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, in a letter addressed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has alleged that Aadhaar cards of people from Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribes and Other Backward Classes, have been deactivated in the state.

Mamata Banerjee alleged that the deactivation amounts to a precursor to bringing about the National Register of Citizens

She also termed the alleged move as a gross violation of natural justice.

“I wish to bring to your kind notice the sudden development of serious nature of indiscriminate de-activation of Aadhaar Cards of people, especially those belonging to the Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and OBCs communities in West Bengal,” Banerjee’s letter read.

The Trinamool supremo further alleged that the Aadhaar cards had been deactivated without any prior intimation to the members of the said community

“It is learnt that the Head Office of UIDAl in New Delhi, without any field enquiry or hearing the persons and taking the State Government into confidence, has been directly issuing letters to individuals and family members informing them about the deactivation of their Aadhaar Cards,” the West Bengal chief minister said.

The letter to the PM stated that “a large number” of aggrieved people have been reaching out to state administration for redressal.

“Every citizen in the state is in a state of fear about this matter. I would like to know from you about the causes for such a sudden action of deactivation of Aadhaar Cards without assigning reasons,” Mamata Banerjee’s letter read.

Further, she asked the Prime Minister if the alleged deactivation of Aadhaar cards in Bengal was a “sinister plot to deprive eligible beneficiaries of welfare schemes, conveniently timed before the Lok Sabha elections”.

Mamata Banerjee also held a press conference on Monday over ‘the indiscriminate Aadhaar deactivation’ in Bengal.

“A certain segment of people, which includes STs, SCs, and those who are below the poverty line, have been withdrawn from availing Aadhaar facilities. However, the move was executed without informing the state government, or district magistrate. People are helpless,” she said.

Attacking the BJP-led government at the Centre, Mamata Banerjee alleged that the deactivation amounts to a precursor to bringing about the National Register of Citizens (NRC).

“Once you (Central Government) used demonetisation to torture people, then they forced Aadhaar card mandate on them. You also charged a hefty Rs.1000 for making these cards. And it was not in the hands of the state government. These cards were linked to their bank accounts. Now, these people will be deprived of all the benefits?” she asked.

Also, at the presser, Mamata Banerjee said that the Aadhaar cards of members, mostly belonging to the Matua community, have been deactivated.

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