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Ex-IAS officer to Amit Shah: Will disobey

'I refuse to accept the process of enumeration in NRC by not submitting the requisite documents to prove my citizenship'

By Our Special Correspondent in Bangalore

  • Published 11.12.19, 2:39 AM
  • Updated 11.12.19, 2:45 AM
S. Sashikanth Senthil has in a letter to home minister Amit Shah said he would not submit his documents.
S. Sashikanth Senthil has in a letter to home minister Amit Shah said he would not submit his documents. Telegraph file picture

A former IAS officer has declared civil disobedience against the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill and the National Register of Citizens and said he is ready for detention.

S. Sashikanth Senthil has in a letter to home minister Amit Shah said he would not submit his documents.

“I refuse to accept the process of enumeration in NRC by not submitting the requisite documents to prove my citizenship and am willing to accept the action taken by the Indian State for my disobedience,” he said in a one-page letter posted on his Twitter handle.

“If the state chooses to declare me a non-citizen I would also be happy to fill up the many detention centres that you are building all over the country.”

Senthil had resigned from the IAS in protest against the abrogation of Jammu and Kashmir’s special status. He was then deputy commissioner of Dakshina Kannada.

“I am sure that every citizen of this great country who would relate to my feelings would certainly follow the path shown by our father of the Nation in South Africa in fighting a draconian law aimed at dehumanising people for political gain,” Senthil wrote on Tuesday.

“In the coming days you will realise that this is the making of people who would stand up for one another and would fight every attempt by any authority to divide us. You would have to move through some of us who would stand in the front to stall your progress at unleashing atrocities towards the marginalised,” he said.

He described the Lok Sabha’s passage of the bill as the “darkest day in the history of modern India”.

“Your vehement defence of the bill on the floor of the House revealed a lot about the core ideology of hatred that drives your government. I feel completely ashamed that as a country, we have let down our Muslim and Adivasi brothers and sisters and have not succeeded in assuaging the fears about (the) secular ethos of the country,” Senthil wrote.

“The pass(age) of this bill has left a deep scar in the belief of already marginalised people and, along with the NRC, is surely an attempt to profile Muslims and Adivasis akin to the Asiatic Registration Act in South Africa and the Nuremberg laws of Germany,” he added, referring to how these two countries had profiled Asians and Jews, respectively.

Senthil wrote that the only option left was to start a civil disobedience movement against the citizenship bill and the NRC.

He later told The Telegraph that he felt obliged to write such a strongly worded letter after witnessing Shah’s defence of the bill in Parliament on Monday.

“The NRC is extremely dangerous and is simply not possible to implement among the Adivasis. Along with the CAB, the NRC is about profiling Muslims,” the former civil servant said.

He urged every well-meaning citizen to boycott the NRC exercise. “The government cannot do anything if people do not cooperate. That’s the only way to resist it once it’s implemented,” he added.

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