Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Wednesday tabled the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill (CAB) in the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday with the assurance that it will give protection to persecuted minorities from three neighbouring countries- Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh.
Addressing the Upper House, Shah said, “When Partition happened, it was thought the minorities will get civil rights and lead a normal life, that they will be able to practice their own religion and protect their women. But when we look back, we see what the truth really is. These people did not get their rights. They were either killed, converted or came to India. This bill will give citizenship to all such people.”
He once again took on the Opposition for allegations that the bill is biased against Muslims in India. “Misinformation has been spread that this bill is against Muslims of India. I want to ask the people saying this how is this bill related to Indian Muslims? The Muslims in India are our citizens, they won’t be tortured. What do you want – all the Muslims coming from all over the world should be given Indian citizenship? This is not possible. The minorities are being persecuted in these three countries, that is why we have included only these countries,” Shah said.
He further added that through this bill, once it becomes law, the Narendra Modi government is going to give legal status to these provisions which will give the minorities an honourable life.
“No Muslim in India needs to worry due to this bill. Don’t get scared if someone tries to scare you. This is Narendra Modi’s government working according to Constitution, minorities will get full protection,” Shah said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday made a renewed pitch for the bill’s enactment. Hours before its tabling in Rajya Sabha, PM Modi said that the legislation would give permanent relief to people who fled religious persecution from three countries in India’s neighbourhood: Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh.
The bill, PM Modi told his party’s lawmakers from the two Houses, will be written in golden letters.