CAA formed to ‘trouble’ Muslims, goes against essence of India against essence of India, says Asaduddin Owaisi

All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) president Asaduddin Owaisi on Sunday criticised the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) and described it as a “wrong law”, which goes against the essence of the country. He alleged that the CAA was formulated based on religion and to “trouble” Muslims.

Asaduddin Owaisi, who has been a vocal opponent of the CAA, said his party has always been and would continue to oppose the legislation.

“This is a wrong law. It is against the essence of India and is formed purely based on religion. CAA cannot be seen alone. There is NPR and NRC. We have never opposed the return of Hindus and Sikhs (to India) living in Pakistan and Afghanistan. They will become Indian citizens after getting a long-term visa,” the AIMIM MP told reporters in Hyderabad.

He made the remarks in response to Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s announcement that the CAA would be implemented before this year’s Lok Sabha polls.

“But there is a process. This law aims to trouble the Muslims, Dalits and other financially backward communities. AIMIM has been opposing it and will always do so. When the BRS government was in power, we also got a resolution passed in the assembly that the government will conduct a census but NRC and NPR will not be allowed here,” Asaduddin Owaisi said.

On Saturday, Amit Shah said the CAA, which was enacted in 2019, will be implemented before the 2024 Lok Sabha elections after issuing the rules in this regard.

“Our Muslim brothers are being misled and instigated (against the CAA). The CAA is only meant to give citizenship to those who came to India after facing persecution in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh. It is not for snatching anyone’s Indian citizenship,” he said at the ET NOW Global Business Summit 2024.

Passed by the Parliament in December 2019, the CAA allows non-Muslim minorities in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan — Hindu, Sikh, Jain, Buddhist, Parsi and Christian — to acquire Indian citizenship to escape persecution in their home countries.

Under the Act, people from these communities who came to India before December 31, 2014, will not be treated as illegal immigrants, but given Indian citizenship.

Massive protests were held against the CAA after it was passed in Parliament till they fizzled out owing to the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown restrictions in 2020. Opposition parties have criticised the law, asserting that it is discriminatory since it grants citizenship only to non-Muslim minorities and not Muslims.

News agency PTI, citing an official, reported last month that the CAA rules are ready with the Centre and will be notified “much before” the announcement of the Lok Sabha elections.

The official said that the online portal for the CAA is also in place and the entire process will be digital.

Published By:

Prateek Chakraborty

Published On:

Feb 12, 2024

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