September 17, 2021

The Citizenship Amendment Act

Introduction

The citizenship amendment act could be a legislation enacted to handle the plight of persecuted minorities who came to Bharat from neighboring countries of Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh. After independence, if congress had not done partition on the premise of faith, then, today we’d haven’t needed this bill. Congress did partition on the idea of faith.” At the time of partition, congress leaders had given word to the minorities-Hindus, Sikhs, Christians, Buddhists and Parsis—that they might be accepted honorably in Bharat. But successive governments have turned a blind eye to the plight of minorities in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh. Visionary leaders like DR BR Ambedkar wanted Hindus, a majority of them dalits, to be brought back as he feared that they might face discrimination in Pakistan. Dr BR Ambedkar had argued that in Islamic state minorities are always treated as second class citizens. According to Dr Ambedkar, the brotherhood of Islam isn’t the universal brotherhood of man. Dr Ambedkar says, “It is that the brotherhood of Muslims for Muslims only. There’s fraternity but its benefit is confined to those within that corporation. For people who are outside the corporation, there’s nothing but contempt and enmity.” Through the passage of the historic citizenship amendment bill the central government has tried to appreciate the dreams of great leaders like Dr Ambedkar, Gandhiji and other leaders. A historic wrong has finally been rectified.

Citizenship (Amendment) Act 2019 – A Duty of Indian State Faithful Its Civilizational Ethos

The CAA may be a necessity mandated by the condition of minorities within the neighboring countries. It’s the civilizational duty of the Indian state to supply shelter and recognize their citizenry given the persecution they need faced at the hands of the fundamentalists and a theocratic state. The newly amended act aims to supply Indian citizen rights to the persecuted minorities belonging to the Hindus, Sikh, Buddhists, Chritian, Jain and Parsi communities from the neighboring countries of Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh. While those in support of the amendments opine that it’s a far required amendment to safeguard the lives of minorities in these Islamic countries, those that are opposition it say that it’s ‘communal’ because it excludes the Muslims. The facts available show that the minorities in these three countries are persecuted by the Muslims and therefore the Islamic establishment in a organized manner, a fact which the congress, Left and self-proclaimed liberals willfully neglect.

Why Citizenship Amendment Bill is very important for the Hindus?                                        

 The Hindus are the foremost persecuted community in Pakistan and Bangladesh. While the Hindus in Afghanistan were already minuscule before the turn of the 20th century, the horror of Islamic fundamentalism continued to hit them even during the liberty movement and later in Pakistan and Bangladesh. In 1951 while the population of Hindus reduced drastically from 22% to mere 8.5% in Bangladesh, the population of Muslims there has risen from 76% to 91% between 1951 and 2018. Even in India, the population of Hindus has decreased from 85% to 79% where as that of Muslims has increased from 9.8% to 15.2% during the identical period. The necessity to safeguard Hindu lives doesn’t need any further reasons.

Are the Muslims Discriminated?

The new amendment is objected alleging that it differentiate between Muslims and non-Muslims illegal immigrants and denies Muslim illegal immigrants civil rights to accumulate Indian citizenship. It feared that if Muslims are unable to ascertain their citizenship through the onerous documentary requirements, are going to be stripped of their citizenship rights. Proving citizenship through historical documentation plus vulnerabilities of misinformation, illiteracy and poverty make it impossibility. They might be subject to disabilities purely on account of their religion. All these fears are with none base. Amendment has nothing to try to with Indian Muslims. Amendment doesn’t prevent Muslims immigrants to use under the prevailing normal route. Citizenship amendment bill doesn’t prescribe any limitation for Muslims in India to use for citizenship by naturalization by 11 years, but only gives a concession to persecute non- Muslims refugees from three Muslims countries. Muslims can’t claim to be victims of non secular persecution in these three countries where they’re in majority. Hindus, Parsis, Sikh, Jain, etc. don’t have any other major country of ultimate refuge except India, whereas Muslims have innumerable countries. Thus, there’s a natural obligation for India during this regard. BJP has promised in its SankalpPatra, 2019 to bring citizenship amendment bill.

Meaningless Protests

Some states like Kerala, Bengal, MP, Punjab etc, have stated that they’ll now no longer put in force citizenship change invoice. But states cannot declare so considering the fact that citizenship is a topic falling handiest within side the relevant listing of the seventh time table of constitution. It is relevant to all states and UTs. CAB has not anything to do with states and nation authorities have no direct role. District magistrates, creditors and nation domestic secretaries ought to carry out beneathneath the regulation as in keeping with the instructions of relevant authorities. Hence there may be no that means in states opposing the change. It is claimed that CAB is to fill lacuna in country wide check in of residents (NRC) to shop 14 lakh Hindus out of nineteen lakh non Assamese not noted of the country wide check in of residents listing. They additionally allege that NRC is needed to put in force CAB. But the NRC listing became finalized in advance this yr beneathneath the supervision of the Supreme Court. Prime minister and domestic minister have now made it clear that in the mean time NRC will now no longer be connected with CAB. NRC and Population census will maintain to take place. There are different new provisions within side the change to cancel the registration of Overseas Citizen of India cardholder who violates any provisions of the act or some other regulation after giving them possibility of listening to. Thus the brand new change has been grossly misrepresented, misled via way of means of the ones political businesses that compete to soothe Muslims for vote politics. The citizenship (change) invoice has been in public area considering the fact that 2016. But political events began out protest handiest after its passing. Further, the invoice became permitted via way of means of a 30 member joint parliamentary committee after listening to all stakeholders and fascinated events.

Constitutional Sanctity of Citizenship Amendment Act

Opponents of the invoice allege that it infringes upon the essential proper to identical safety assured beneath Article 14, that Art 14 forbids class legislation and that the regulation is primarily based totally on an unreasonable and inappropriate differentia. Articles 14 to 18 cope with proper to equality, a fundamental right. Genesis of its constitutional basis may be traced to the constituent meeting debates. Dr. Ambedkar became of the view that giving citizenship proper is absolutely in the powers of the parliament to legislate. Under Article 11, the proper in all subjects of citizenship vests absolutely with parliament. Those who oppose the invoice additionally argued that article 14 offers advantages of equality to “any person” inclusive of foreigner; as a result overseas unlawful migrants cannot be discriminated on the premise of faith. The query arises whether or not the overseas migrants may be discriminated at the faith primarily based totally criterion for citizenship. The preferred provision of article 14 guarantees equality and identical safety of regulation to “all persons’ whether or not overseas or Indian. But the unique provision of Art 15(1) that limit discrimination on the premise of faith is to be had handiest to “residents’. Those who oppose the invoice handiest factor out the availability of Art 14 and easily miss the unique provision on faith in Art 15(1). Hence foreigners may be selectively introduced beneath regulation as in keeping with exigencies.

To conclude, there may be no regulation that is best and modifications after implementation stays a dynamic process. The equal template will practice to Citizenship Amendment Act too with inside the lengthy run. For the instant there may be a want to accurate a huge incorrect this is being finished to a phase of our very own people, a lot of whom are from Punjab, and that is precisely what the invoice, in its gift form, is designed to achieve. To oppose it only for the sake of opposing and to elevate insecurities wherein none want to exist is pretty unnecessary.

Author- VANI GARG (GOVT. MOHINDRA COLLEGE PATIALA)

Disclaimer: The opinions are personal only.

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