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Government To Refer Citizenship Amendment Bill To Panel

The opposition today opposed the moving of the Citizenship Amendment Bill, 2016, in the Lok Sabha, compelling the government to say it will refer it to a Parliamentary panel.

The government had listed the bill for consideration and passing.

Soon after the papers were laid on the table of the House after question hour, Speaker Sumitra Mahajan allowed BJD’s Bhartruhari Mahtab to raise his objections regarding its introduction.

“This bill needs proper scrutinisation. Specific amendments have been listed in it. It needs a proper discussion. I would request the government to form a joint committee and refer the matter to it and it should discuss the matter in a time bound manner,” Mr Mahtab said.

The Congress, the Left and the Trinamool Congress also raised their objections and urged the government to refer it to a Joint Parliamentary Committee or the Standing Committee.

Congress member Jyotiraditya Scindia said: “We support this bill but there are many shortcomings… So, the matter should either be referred to a Joint Select Committee or Parliamentary Standing Committee.”

The Citizenship Act, 1955, provides various ways in which citizenship may be acquired.

Mohammad Salim of CPI-M and Sudip Bandopadhyay of the Trinamool Congress also made a similar demand.

Responding to the objections, Home Minister Rajnath Singh said: “If members wish to refer the bill to a Joint Committee of Parliament, the government has no objections.”