Citizenship Bill gets Lok Sabha nod at midnight after fiery debate
New Delhi : The Lok Sabha on Tuesday passed the Citizenship Bill that grants residentship to religious minorities from three Muslim-majority countries in India's neighbourhood amid fiery 9-hour-long debate with Opposition claiming it to be a violation of Indian constitution by linking faith with citizenship.
The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill (CAB) 2019 seeks to amend the 1955 Citizenship Act by granting citizenship to Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs, Christians, Parsis and Jains who entered India from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan on or before December 31, 2014.
The bill has been passed by the Lok Sabha at 12.04 am on Tuesday after a debate that began around 4.30 pm.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi hailed the passage of the bill in the Lok Sabha and tweeted, "This bill is in line with India’s centuries-old ethos of assimilation and belief in humanitarian values."
Union Home Minister Amit Shah had tabled the bill in the lower house and won the motion 293-82.
“If minorities are getting persecuted in neighbouring countries, we cannot be mute spectators. We have to ensure their safety and dignity,” Shah said.
“We will have to differentiate between intruders and refugees. The Citizenship amendment bill does not discriminate against anyone and does not snatch anyone’s rights,” Shah said.