New Delhi: The Lok Sabha on Monday passed the Citizenship Amendment Bill. Home Minister Amit Shah stated that the legislation was a historic document to liberate the crores of refugees who had come from Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh from adversities they have faced for decades.
But, plainly the ultimate intent of CAB is to implement National Registration of Citizens, which, once passed, will help protect non-Muslims and harass Muslim citizens.
A nationwide NRC under ‘The Citizenship (Registration and Issue of National Identity Cards) Rules 2003‘ will be called the National Register of India Citizens (NRIC).
‘There will be house-to-house enumeration throughout India, except Assam, for collection of information relating to all persons who are usually residing within the jurisdiction of a local registrar,’ according to the Ministry of Home Affairs Gazette notification on 31 July 2019.
The exercise will start from from1 April to 30 September 2020.
The five-year-long rigorous NRC process in Assam stripped the dignity of religious and linguistic minorities. Scores of people have committed suicide in fear of losing citizenship, most are running around for documents, and multiple hearings have caused losses. The state is divided like never before into religious lines.
The ominous presence of a supposedly large number of Muslim illegal migrants all over India is now part of political rhetoric. It is not backed by any empirical data. Assam is the only state where the NRC exercise was carried out to find the exact number of illegal migrants. Over the years, politicians threw about numbers that ranged from 1 crore to 50 lakh. Even then, the final NRC list excluded 19 lakh people, and it soon became apparent that most of them are also Indian citizens. The list included parents but left out their children causing untold trauma and blowing the lid on propaganda. The exercise left it to the Foreigners’ Tribunals to determine the citizenship of excluded people.
Uncontent with the outcome of the Supreme Court-monitored NRC in Assam, Amit Shah said on the floor of Parliament that another round of NRC will be carried out in Assam along with the nationwide-NRC. The Assam NRC had busted the myth of illegal migration and excluded fewer Muslims than the BJP had wished for. And Hindus got excluded too. They don’t want to repeat the Assam exercise.
Over 1.3 crore people were marked as OI or original inhabitants. in the Assam NRC as per sub-clause (3) of clause 3 of the Schedule to the Citizenship Rules, 2003. They didn’t go through any verification, even if they didn’t submit required documents, they were included in the NRC only because the registering authority was satisfied that citizenship of such person is ascertained beyond a reasonable doubt. Although this provision won’t apply to the nationwide-NRC, the CAB will not be very different from this provision and the registering authority will presume that as all non-Muslim illegal migrants have been made citizens. Citizenship of non-Muslims will not be doubted this time. Their citizenship will be beyond a reasonable doubt. The only community that will be subjected to all sorts of verification and scrutiny will be the Muslim.