Amit Shah: CAA to Be Enforced Pre-Lok Sabha Polls

Home Minister Amit Shah stated that the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) will be implemented in the country before the Lok Sabha elections. He mentioned that the CAA is in the interest of the nation, and they will inform everyone about it well before the elections. No one should have any doubts about it.

Amit Shah spoke about this during the ET Global Business Summit on Saturday. He mentioned that the Congress government had promised to implement the CAA. When many minority communities were facing atrocities in several countries, Congress assured refugees that they could come to India. They will be granted citizenship here, but now Congress is backtracking on its words.

Shah Asserts: No Stopping CAA Implementation

During a meeting in Kolkata last year, Home Minister Amit Shah stated that nothing can stop the implementation of the CAA. He criticized Mamata Banerjee for indulging in infiltration, corruption, political violence, and appeasement. He appealed to the people to remove the Mamata government from West Bengal and elect BJP in the 2026 Assembly elections.

At the same time, 12 days before, Union Minister Shantanu Thakur had said, “I assure you that the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) will be implemented nationwide within 7 days.” Thakur addressed a rally in the Lakshadweep Islands.

Bill Passed in Lok Sabha-Rajya Sabha in 2019

On December 11, 2019, the Citizenship Amendment Bill 2019 (CAB) received 125 votes in favor and 99 against in the Rajya Sabha. The next day, December 12, 2019, it was approved by the President. After extensive opposition across the country, the bill became law after being passed by both houses of Parliament. Home Minister Amit Shah had introduced it in the Lok Sabha on December 9.

Amendments in the 1955 Act

The Citizenship Amendment Bill 2016 (CAA) was introduced in 2016. Several amendments had to be made in the 1955 Act for this. These amendments would grant citizenship to non-Muslim refugees from neighboring countries Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. It was referred to a joint parliamentary committee on August 12, 2016. The committee submitted its report on January 7, 2019.

Clashes Erupted Amid Opposition

This bill was contentious even before it came to Lok Sabha, but opposition increased after it became law. Protests erupted in various parts of Delhi. Demonstrations were held in many districts. On the night of February 23, 2020, violence erupted at Jaffrabad metro station, leading to clashes in several areas. Over 50 people lost their lives in the ensuing violence.

CAA Opposition Spreads Across Four States

After the passage of the CAA bill by both houses of Parliament, resolutions opposing it have been circulated in the legislative assemblies of four states. Kerala’s Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan led the dissent in December 2019, stating that it goes against the principles of secularism and the country’s constitution, potentially leading to discrimination based on religion.

Opposition Mounts: Resolutions in Punjab, Rajasthan, and West Bengal

Following Kerala’s lead, the governments of Punjab and Rajasthan have also introduced resolutions against the CAA in their respective assemblies. West Bengal, as the fourth state, witnessed the spread of similar resolutions against the bill. West Bengal’s Chief Minister stated, “We will not accept CAA, NPR, and NRC in Bengal.

Niyati Rao

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