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CAA Does Not Violate Indian Fundamental, Legal, and Secular Rights, Center Tells SC | India News

NEW DELHI: The Center on Tuesday told the Supreme Court that the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (2019) does not violate any fundamental rights or affect the legal, democratic and secular rights of Indian citizens.

The central government, in its 129-page affidavit in response to appeals challenging CAA’s constitutional validity, branded the legal legislation and stated that there was no doubt that it violated constitutional morality that it is not a “rebel horse.”

In seeking rejection of the pleas, he said that Indian secularism “is not irreligious,” but takes into account all religions and promotes courtesy and brotherhood.

The affidavit, submitted by BC Joshi, Director of the Interior Ministry, said that the AAC does not confer any arbitrary and non-executive power, as citizenship to persecuted minorities in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh would be granted in the manner specified in the law that governs the granting of citizenship.

“CAA does not affect any existing rights that may have existed prior to the enactment of the amendment and furthermore, in no way seeks to affect the legal, democratic or secular rights of any of the Indian citizens. The existing regime for obtaining Citizenship of India by foreigners from any country has not been touched by the AAC and remains the same, “he said.

The amended law seeks to grant citizenship to non-Muslim immigrants who belong to the Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Christian, Jain, and Parsi communities who arrived in the country from Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan on or before December 31, 2014.

A bank headed by the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court S A Bobde had decided on December 18 last year to examine the constitutional validity of the AAC, but had refused to suspend its operation.

He had requested the Center’s response in more than 100 appeals, including those submitted by the Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) Congress leader Jairam Ramesh, challenging the AAC.

IUML has said that CAA violates the fundamental right to equality and intends to grant citizenship to a section of illegal immigrants by making an exclusion based on religion.

Regarding the petitioners’ assertion that the amendment is unconstitutional as it applies to six minorities in three countries and there are other minorities there, the government said that Parliament is competent to assign religious minorities in all three countries and is not bound by the declaration of minority status to any other community or sect for them.

He said history shows that persecuted minorities in all three countries – Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh – were left without any rights and the landmark amendment seeks to remedy historic injustice without removing or reducing the right of anyone else. .

Regarding the petitioners’ dependence on article 15 (Prohibition of discrimination based on religion, race, caste, sex, or place of birth) and 19 (Protection of certain rights with respect to freedom of expression) in their challenge to CAA, the Centro said these rights are available only to Indians and not to illegal immigrants or foreigners.

He said that Indians cannot claim rights under Article 15 and Article 19 on behalf of illegal immigrants or foreigners.

The Center called the petitioners’ claim that the exclusion of the Ahamadis, Shias, Bahaiis, Hazras, Jews, Atheists or Baloch communities from the first level of classification is arbitrary and discriminatory.

“Intra-religious persecutions or sectarian persecution or persecution due to the non-recognition of particular sects within the fold of the majority religion in these countries cannot be equated with the persecution of religious minorities who follow and practice a different and completely different religion. than the majority religion in neighboring countries in particular, “said the affidavit.

He said that CAA results in not granting any exemption to Tibetan Buddhists in China and Tamil Hindus in Sri Lanka, and the claim that the law attempts to classify people who belong only to the Muslim community as ‘illegal immigrants’ does not It has a base. The claim that CAA is against a particular community is wrong, unfounded and, of course, mischievous, he said.

“The recognition of religious persecution in particular neighboring states, which have a specific state religion and a long history of religious persecution of minorities, is actually a reinstatement of the Indian ideals of secularism, equality and fraternity,” he added.

He said that CAA seeks to protect the ‘freedom of religion’, which is an invaluable human right, of the classified communities that have been persecuted for expressing and practicing their respective religions in neighboring countries.

He said that the petitioners’ assertion that the requirement of citizenship registration delegated to the executive is “wrong” since the National Registry of Citizens (NRC) does not create an embargo on any form of citizenship.

He stated that the issue may not be within the scope of the judicial review and may not be justiciable.

Several petitions have been filed challenging the CAA, including RJD leader Manoj Jha, Trinamool congress deputy Mahua Moitra, AIMIM leader Asaduddin Owaisi.

Other petitioners include the Muslim body Jamiat Ulama-i-Hind, All Assam Students Union (AASU), Peace Party, CPI, NGO ‘Rihai Manch’ and Citizens Against Hate, advocate ML Sharma, and law students also have approached the apex court challenging the Act.

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