Hitting out at the Centre over the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Sunday said the "communal elements" today were using the British colonisers' strategy of disrupting people's unity by dividing them on communal lines.
He also said that the CAA must be rejected as it was "against the Constitution", "divisive" and "seeks to impose the philosophy of Hindutva", due to which the country's secular fabric was facing a "profound crisis".
According to him, the amended citizenship law has pierced the secular mind of the people and rekindled the spirit of nationalist movement.
Vijayan, who heads the Communist Party of India Marxist-led Left Democratic Front government in the southern state, was speaking at the 'Mumbai Collective' on 'National struggle against communalism'.
"In the past, our movement was against the colonisers, but presently our struggle against communalism is a movement against those who stood with the colonisers," he said.
"In the past, the colonisers tried to disrupt people's unity by dividing them on communal lines. Today, the communal elements are using the same strategy experimented by their masters," he added.
The fact that so many of us are out there on the streets, and gatherings such as this are happening across the country, are indicators of what our nation thinks at this point of time, Vijayan said.
"We do not have an iota of doubt that India's secular structure is facing a profound crisis, that out Constitution is under threat, and that out democracy itself is sought to be fundamentally undermined by the communal forces," he alleged.
"While a series of interventions with a communal agenda have been made by the ruling dispensation, it is the Citizenship Amendment Act, 2019 that has proved to be last weapon which has strongly pierced the secular mind of our people. It has rekindled the spirit of out nationalist movement," he said.
He also defended the anti-CAA resolution passed by the Kerala assembly.
"The Kerala legislative assembly has passed a resolution demanding the central government to repeal the Citizenship Amendment Act. Constitutionally, a state assembly can do so; it is well within its constitutional powers," he said.
Kerala was the first state to pass a resolution against the CAA, followed by Punjab, Rajasthan and West Bengal.
"The CAA-2019 has imperiled the nation's constitutional values, and it must be rejected for three reasons," Vijayan said.
"First of all, it is against the letter and spirit of our Constitution. Secondly, it is divisive, deeply discriminatory and violative of human rights. And third, it seeks to impose the politics and philosophy of Hindutva, with its vision of a 'Hindu Rashtra' on our entire people and on the basic structure of our polity," he said.