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Dangerous rhetoric

Political parties must stop feasting on the complexities of Assam’s demography

In the week since the final draft of the National Register of Citizens in Assam was completed, the political rhetoric(भाषण कला/उदारवादी) has got irresponsibly(गैर जिम्मेदाराना) away from the issue at hand. Those associated(संबंधी/शामिल) with the preparation of the NRC, including(सहित/अन्तर्गत करते हुए) its Supreme Court-appointed coordinator(समन्वयक/सामंजस्य),Prateek Hajela, are at pains to point out that the draft is by no means the end of the road. The more than 40 lakh people whose names are missing from the draft have a graded(श्रेणीबद्ध/क्रमिक) appeals process ahead, first at NRC seva kendras. Failing rehabilitation(पुनर्वास/पुनर्निवेशन) on the list at this stage, they can appeal to district magistrates, the Foreigners’ Tribunals(न्यायाधिकरण), the Gauhati High Court and the Supreme Court. It is a long and daunting(कठिन/चुनौतीपूर्ण ) process, and a mature polity would ensure(सुनिश्चित) that that no man, woman or child is stranded without legal and other assistance to deal with the paperwork. Instead(बजाय/बदले में), a full-blown political spectacle(तमाशा/चमत्कार) has unfolded, with parties trivialising the complexity(जटिलता/पेचीदगी) of the process. The president of the Bharatiya Janata Party, Amit Shah, has filled the air with challenges to Opposition parties, particularly(विशेष रूप से/विस्तार ) the Congress, to spell out their stand on “Bangladeshi immigrants(आप्रवासियों /प्रवासी नागरिक)” and clarify if they want them “to stay here or evict(बेदख़ल करना/निकालना)them”. Sundry BJP leaders have talked in favour of an NRC in every State, giving a threatening(धमकी देना/भयसूचक)denominational twist to the issue. And West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, seemingly as willing to court her own political constituency(निर्वाचन क्षेत्र) over the NRC draft list, has warned of a “bloodbath” and a “civil war”.

There is a manifest(ज़ाहिर/प्रत्यक्ष) lack of concern about those bracing(जोड़नेवाला/ताल्लुक़) themselves to go through the appeals process when one listens to a Telangana BJP MLA’s violent(हिंसक) words, a Congressperson’s boasts(दावा/डींग मारना) about thousands of Bangladeshis deported(निर्वासित) on his party’s watch, or the TMC chief’s angry remarks. Each of those lakhs of persons who doesn’t find herself on the list is a human being, given to heaviness(भारीपन/जड़ता) of heart at being left off a citizens’ list, wary of the process that lies ahead, and assailed(धावा बोलना/आक्रमण करना) by what-if scenarios. Among those on the list are people cutting across linguistic(भाषा-संबंधी/भाषाई), ethnic(जातीय/संजाति विषयक) and religious groups. Together, they do not fit the profile being conveyed(सूचित करना/पहुंचाना) by the dog-whistle(सीटी/बांसुरी) politics of the BJP to sharpen(गहरा बनाना/तीव्र करना) its identity politics nationwide. In fact, Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, of the BJP too, has implied(अस्पष्ट) as much, while counselling calm. Equally, the shrill politics at the national level is holding India back from facing the necessary questions: can it genuinely heed its civilisational(सभ्यतागत) legacy(विरासत/वसीयत) without issuing an assurance that nobody who has lived for a long time in this land will be rendered(प्रस्तुत करना/लौटाना) stateless? And that the country is confident of finding a way to close this process without disadvantaging(नुक़सान पहुंचाना/हानि पहुंचाना) those who will be off the eventual(अंतिम/मुमकिन) list and those on it?



Important Vocabulary


1.Rhetoric(भाषण कला/उदारवादी) 
Synonyms: hyperbole, oratory, address, balderdash, bombast
Antonyms: quiet, conciseness

Synonyms: complication, intricacy, ramification, convolution, elaboration
Antonyms: clarity, directness, ease, obvious, simplicity

Synonyms: board, committee, judge, justice, bar

4.Evict(बेदख़ल करना/निकालना) 
Synonyms: chase, dislodge, dismiss, dispossess, eject
Antonyms: hold, keep, take in, welcome, admit

5.Immigrants(आप्रवासियों /प्रवासी नागरिक)
Synonyms: alien, foreigner, migrant, newcomer, settler
Antonyms: citizen, national, native, local

Synonyms: glaring, palpable, unambiguous, unmistakable, bold
Antonyms: hidden, ambiguous, concealed, unclear, vague

Synonyms: dismiss, displace, exile, expatriate, expel
Antonyms: allow, hold,keep, take in, welcome

Synonyms: dismiss, displace, exile, expatriate, expel
Antonyms: allow, hold, keep, take in, welcome

9.Ethnic(जातीय/संजाति विषयक)
Synonyms: indigenous, national, traditional, tribal, native

Synonyms: conditional, consequent, inevitable, possible, prospective
Antonyms: beginning, unlikely, past




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