Union Minister of State for Home G. Kishan Reddy on Monday said states can neither refuse to carry out the Census and the National Population Register (NPR) exercise nor stop the process.
Speaking to reporters in Hyderabad, the BJP leader said that the proposed NPR would be almost the same as the one in 2010, with some more details being sought to implement welfare measures.
"Almost the same. NPR means Census.Census means NPR.There are no changes. The usefulness in Census, (we are) taking some more details for welfare activity," he said.
"Some states are saying we will not conduct it or the cabinet will take a final decision," he said in an obvious reference to West Bengal and Kerala, which have stopped NPR related work.
Kishan Reddy, who took part in a pro-CAA event organised by BJP in Hyderabad, also said no individual would be troubled and details of Aadhaar card, properties and bank accounts were not necessary under NPR.
He said the population census would be conducted from February 9 to 28, while that for housing data would be from April to September 2020.
The census and NPR would be done simultaneously by enumerators using mobile apps in smartphones. Using the data, the centre and states can implement their schemes, he said.
The data would also be used to determine whether to increase or decrease SC/ST reservations and decide on delimitation of Lok Sabha and Assembly constituencies,he said.
Delimitation of LS constituencies to be done in 2026 would be based on data obtained from the 2021 census, he said.
Asked what action government would take if some states do not implement NPR, he said, "This is a constitutional obligation to take up the Census and NPR. NPR was initiated by the Congress Government.. But some people are spreading a malafide campaign that people will be kept in detention centres and jails," he said.
Kishan sought to know why AIMIM had not objected when the Telangana government conducted an integrated family survey on a single day, in which details, including Aadhar, those related to religion, house and bank accounts were included.
He also said he would like to inform Congress leader Rahul Gandhi there was nothing against any religion in the Citizenship Amendment Act.
Launching a broadside on Congress, he charged the opposition party with indulging in politics on the CAA issue.
"...Congress is misleading... doing politics,making wrong use (of CAA) to halt development, to halt our work to make the (country) an economic superpower of 5 trillion dollars," he said.
He said any ordinary BJP worker would be ready for a debate with Rahul Gandhi at any stage or place on the issue. There was not even a word in the CAA against Indian Muslims orpeople of other religions and people of the minority community had nothing to fear, he said.
He said attempts had been made to provoke people everywhere and information received from states was that it was all pre-planned.
"But it is the responsibility of state governments to probe and find out who is behind that. Law and order comes purely under the state governments," he said.
The Congress had tried to make an issue out of alleged lapses in security to the Gandhi family, he said it was the responsibility of the (central) government to provide security to them, as to all citizens.
After breaking security cover and going wherever they wished to, they could not question about it, he said.