Modi govt’s anti-Muslim law challenged in SC as violent protests erupt across India
GUWAHATI: People across India have taken to streets and challenged the Citizens Amendment Bill (CAB) 2019 in the Supreme Court, after the upper house of India passed the law targeted to marginalize Muslims on Thursday.
The Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) moved the top court against the new law on Thursday, arguing that the granting citizenship on the basis of religion was a violation of the constitution.
India has deployed a large number of troops into Assam state after people staged protests against the move of the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government to facilitate all the people from the neighbouring countries to get the citizenship except for Muslims.
According to Reuters news agency, mobile and internet services have been suspended in several parts of the northeastern state, after the government issued a warning against use of social media to “inflame passions and thus exacerbate the law and order situation.”
Commenting on the Indian citizenship legislation, Pakistan’s Federal Minister for Railways Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed has said Modi was turning India into an extremist Hindu state.
On Dec 9, expressing serious concerns over India’s passage of the CAB in the Lok Sabha (the lower house), the United States has sought sanctions against Indian Home Minister Amit Shah and other main leaders over the controversial legislation.
The bill offers Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians from Muslim-majority neighbouring countries – Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh – citizenship. While, there is no provision for Muslims in this bill.
The opposition parties in India has opposed the discriminatory bill, which was first tabled in 2016 but it could not be successful after an alliance party withdrew. This time it had garnered 311 votes in favor and merely 80 votes against it in the Lok Sabha. Now, it would be presented before the upper house.
The United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) has stated that America was ‘deeply troubled’ by the bill, scroll.in reported. It said the legislation was “a dangerous turn in the wrong direction”
“It runs counter to India’s rich history of secular pluralism and the Indian Constitution, which guarantees equality before the law regardless of faith,” USCIRF added.