Published On: Tue, Dec 10th, 2019

Citizenship Amendment Bill sails through Lok Sabha; Big no to Rohingyas

New Delhi: The Lok Sabha on Monday passed the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019 after a six-hour long debate which saw a fiery speech by Union Home Minister Amit Shah defending the controversial Bill.

Rohingyas will never be accepted as citizens of India

Among a total of 391 members present in the Lower House, 311 voted in favour of the Bill while 80 voted against it.

The Bill seeks to amend the Citizenship Act, 1955 to make illegal migrants who are Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians, excluding Muslims, from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan eligible for Indian citizenship. The Bill relaxes the requirement of residence in India from 11 years to six years for these migrants

“Delighted that the Lok Sabha has passed the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019 after a rich and extensive debate. I thank the various MPs and parties that supported the Bill. This Bill is in line with India’s centuries old ethos of assimilation and belief in humanitarian values,” tweeted Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

While defending the Bill in the Lok Sabha, Shah said that the Citizenship Bill does not affect Indian Muslims. He also said that no need to prepare background, India will have National Register of Citizens.

During his reply on the debate, Shah said that the Centre will never touch Article 371 and that Rohingyas will never be accepted as citizens of India.

“Rohingyas will never be accepted as citizens of India. They infiltrated India through Bangldesh. The came from Myanmar,” Shah said.

“There is a difference between Article 370 and Article 371. Article 371 does not give flag to anyone. We will never touch Article 371. I am assuring this to the whole northeast region,” the Home Minister said.

After the government abrogated Article 370 that granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir, Article 371, which has special provisions for other states, primarily from the northeast region, has gained attention and in order to set the records straight, Shah clarified once for all on the floor of the house.

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