Citizenship Amendment Act Potentially Violates Indian Constitution, Says US Congress Report

Citizenship Amendment Act

Citizenship Amendment Act: According to a report released by the US Congress’ independent research wing, there is a possibility that some of the provisions of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), which was passed this year, violate the Indian Constitution.

CRS Report Highlights Potential Constitutional Violations by CAA

According to the Congressional Research Service (CRS) report, “The CAA’s key provisions — allowing immigrants of six religions from three countries a path to citizenship while excluding Muslims — may violate certain Articles of the Indian Constitution.”

March marked the implementation of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), which amends the 1955 Citizenship Act, almost four years after Parliament approved it. It opens the door for undocumented non-Muslim migrants from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, and Pakistan who entered India before December 31, 2014, to be granted citizenship.

Concerns Over CAA-NRC Combination

The research raises worries that the CAA may inadvertently violate the rights of the Muslim community in India when combined with the proposed National Register of Citizens (NRC). According to the study, many against the CAA are leery of the BJP, which is in power “pursuing a Hindu majoritarian, anti-Muslim agenda that threatens India’s status as an officially secular republic and violates international human rights norms and obligations”.

CAA Implementation Amidst BJP Re-Election Campaign

The report also notes that the CAA’s implementation “came amidst the BJP’s second national re-election campaign” and some observers view the timing as “motivated largely by politics”. It added, “…With the CAA designed to protect only members of ‘approved’ religions, others will have little recourse, thus forwarding alleged Modi-BJP efforts to undermine India’s secular ethos and establish what one senior observer calls ‘an ethnic democracy that equates the [Hindu] majoritarian community with the nation’ and relegates others to second-class status.”

Non-Endorsement of Viewpoints, Observing CAA’s Impact

The US Congress’s independent research arm, the CRS, produces reports to support legislative decision-making but does not endorse any one viewpoint. Prior to this, the Biden government had voiced its worries about the Citizenship Amendment Act’s notice in India and said it was closely observing the controversial law’s implementation.

India has brushed off criticism and insisted again and time again that the major goal of the CAA is to confer citizenship. The Center had promised in a statement that this legislation would not result in any loss of citizenship for any citizen of the nation.

Exit mobile version