Popular Front terms the Citizenship Amendment Bill as unconstitutional; calls upon the secular parties to prevent the passage of the bill in Parliament. People should oppose the proposal.

The Union Cabinet today has cleared the controversial and partisan Citizenship Amendment Bill, paving the way for it to be tabled in Parliament. This nod by the cabinet has once again proved the utter disregard by the BJP led Government for the constitution.

The amendment paves the way for the Hindus, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists, Parsees and Jains from the neighboring countries like Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh to acquire Indian citizenship. The BJP government has shown its true communal colour by effectively leaving out the Muslims from this list. The government’s claim that only persecuted religious minorities are given this opportunity doesn’t stand ground, as the Rohingya Muslims are the most persecuted ethnic minorities as per United Nations.

Religion cannot be a criterion in granting citizenship and by doing so the BJP government has gone against Articles 5 to 10, Article 15 and Article 29 of the Indian constitution which details various categories of persons who are entitled for citizenship. The move is also against Article 14 which guarantees equal rights to all.

The Bill which was passed by the previous NDA government in January 2018 in Lok Sabha, was not tabled in the Rajya Sabha, due to opposition from the North eastern states including the allies of BJP. The opposition for the Bill still remains in those regions but the government is hell bent to table the Bill again.

Popular Front demands the Union Cabinet to recall the decision to table the Bill in Parliament and calls upon the secular and democratic forces from civic society to come out against the proposed amendment which is against the basic tenet of our constitution.