Today’s Big Stories
Contentious Citizenship Bill that excludes Muslims passed by Rajya Sabha amid protests, soon to be law
The Rajya Sabha on Wednesday night approved the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill (CAB), completing the legislative procedure for giving Indian citizenship to non-Muslim migrants from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh.
In defence: Union Home Minister Amit Shah rejected the Opposition's charge that the bill was anti-Muslim, saying it does not take away the citizenship of any Indian Muslim and only seeks to give the same to persecuted minorities of three neighbouring countries. He said the need to bring this Bill would not have arisen had Partition not taken place on the basis of religion.
Northeast simmers: Guwahati, the epicentre of protests against the bill, was placed under indefinite curfew on Wednesday. The Army was deployed in the city and Assam Rifles personnel were deployed in Tripura as the two northeastern states plunged into chaos over the hugely emotive legislation. Internet services remained suspended for the second day and paramilitary forces along with Tripura State Rifles (TSR) personnel were deployed in some districts of Tripura.
U-turn: Two days after the Lok Sabha passed the Citizenship Bill with overwhelming support from several parties, including the Shiv Sena, the party’s MP Sanjay Raut hit out at the BJP during the debate on the proposed law asking why those who are critical of it are being labelled as anti-nationals. The Sena staged a walkout ahead of voting on the bill in the Rajya Sabha, citing unsatisfactory response to the queries raised by it.
Opposition: Severely criticising the passage of the bill, Sonia Gandhi said it marks a "dark day" in the constitutional history of India and is a "victory of narrow-minded and bigoted forces" over the country's pluralism. The bill will be challenged in court in the near future as it is "highly suspect" in terms of constitutionality, senior Congress leader Abhishek Singhvi said.
Something fishy?: While tabling the Citizenship Amendment Bill in the Lok Sabha on Monday, Amit Shah assured that it "intends to provide protection to the persecuted minorities in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh." Aditya Sharma reports that the contents of the Bill, however, seem to be incompatible with some arguments put forth by the government at the time of its introduction. Particular the fact that the six clauses the bill seeks to amend do not mention "persecution" as the basis for granting citizenship or "persecuted minorities" as the beneficiaries of the legislation.
The killings of the four accused in the rape and murder case of a veterinarian doctor in Hyderabad led to a nationwide outcry over the state of law and order. Do cops have the license to kill? CNN-News18's Maha Siddiqui explains.
Curated and compiled by Chitwan Kaur