09:53 GMT24 February 2020
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    Protests Against New Citizenship Law in India (51)
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    New Delhi (Sputnik): The Indian states of Punjab, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and West Bengal have refused to implement the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), calling it unconstitutional.

    India's Central Government has said that implementation of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) comes under the federal government, and that individual states have no powers to to stand in its way, according to a source in the Indian Ministry of Home Affairs.

    ​“We will finalise who all will be involved in implementation. It will be a digital and easy process so that the people don't face any problem,” the ministry source said.

    The MHA is currently under pressure due to countrywide protests and police violence at Jamia Milia Islamia University in Delhi and Aligarh Muslim University.

    Sources told news agency ANI: “We brought the Bill after we consulted all. There were discussions, but they have the right to go to court and people have right to protest too. Those who want to give suggestions can give; we are in the process of framing the rule.”

    The Indian parliament recently approved a Citizens Amendment Bill, which after being signed by President Ram Nath Kovind is now the Citizens Amendment Act (CAA). The new Act along with a proposed National Register of Citizens (NRC) have resulted in massive protests, especially by the Muslim community who feel it is discriminatory and favours Hindus, Sikhs, Christians, Parsis, Jains, and Buddhists.  

    The CAA would give Indian citizenship to non-Muslim immigrants from Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh if they can prove they fled to India on or before 31 December, 2014 as a result of religious persecution.  

    The NRC is about identifying illegal immigrants living in India, but a section of Muslims fears that when the NRC is launched across India, only Muslims will have to prove their citizenship and not people of any other faith.

    Indian Home Minister Amit Shah has said that no citizen of India should fear either the new law or the NRC, and the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) claims that opposition parties are creating confusion among voters by misrepresenting both the CAA and the NRC. 

    Protests Against New Citizenship Law in India (51)


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