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Government: CAA is not an answer to all religious persecution in the world | India News


NEW DELHI: The Center responded Tuesday to petitions questioning the constitutional validity of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) in the Supreme Court, stating that it was a closely tailored law that addressed problems in granting citizenship to some communities persecuted on the basis of religion in neighboring Islamic countries and assured that it had no impact on the citizenship of the Indians.
To counter the accusation that CAA was discriminatory as it did not consider granting citizenship to persecuted minority communities such as Ahmadis, Shias, Bahaiis, Hazaras, Jews and Balochs, the Center said: “CAA does not seek to recognize or seek to provide answers to all kinds of alleged persecution that may be occurring worldwide or that may have previously taken place anywhere in the world CAA is a closely adapted legislation that seeks to address the specific problem that awaited the attention of India to find a solution from several decades ago. ”
His 129-page affidavit called CAA benign legislation that seeks to relax, in the nature of an amnesty, specific communities in specific countries with a clear deadline. In labeling its affidavit as a “preliminary response,” the Center said the CAA’s key mode of classification was the identification of six communities: Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs, Jains, Parisians, and Christians, to provide them with a limited exemption under the CAA.
The Center’s affidavit at the Supreme Court said that Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh had Islam as a state religion with “recognized religious persecution.”
“History clearly shows that the persecuted minorities in those three countries were left without any rights and that the landmark amendment seeks to remedy the historic injustice without removing or reducing the right of anyone else,” the Center said. He added: “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 Indian citizen.”
He said that the existing regime for obtaining Indian citizenship remained intact by CAA and that “legal migration, based on valid documents and visas, remains permissible from all countries in the world, including Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh.”
“All foreigners, regardless of religion and living in these three countries or in any other country, can legally migrate to India subject to compliance with the conditions mentioned in the Citizenship Act of 1955, apply for and obtain Indian citizenship if they are eligible, “said the Center. said.
Referring to a plethora of pleas from politicians, rights activists and even state governments to challenge the AAC, the Center said it amounted to misuse of the PIL instrument created by the SC for the benefit of the poor and oppressed who have no voice. no access to court. “Matters related to the sovereign plenary power of Parliament, especially regarding citizenship and its contours, cannot be questioned before the SC by means of a request in the public interest,” he said.
“The cardinal principle of locus standi has been diluted by this jurisprudence (PIL) developed by the SC only in situations of limited facts that cannot be extrapolated to include the present constitutional challenge to the legislative measure of the Indian Parliament in the domain of related matters with citizenship / immigration, “he added.
On the petitioners’ reference to the alleged violation of international covenants, and the alleged measure by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights seeking to be amicus in the SC, the Center said: “India is not a signatory nor has it ratified the 1951 Refugee Convention or the 1967 Protocol on territorial asylum. ”
“The fundamental rights provisions of the Constitution, in the context of this case, Articles 14 and 21, cannot be interpreted with reference to any international convention or treaty to which India is not a signatory or has not ratified the same.” said the center. The petitioners’ assertion that the principle of non-refoulement (non-refugee return) is part of customary international law is wrong in law.
“The principle of non-refoulement cannot be derived from the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.”

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