Legal Challenge and Great Sociopolitical Ramifications: The Day After Implementation of Citizenship Law in India

By manish198832 Mar 12, 2024

Legal Challenge and Great Sociopolitical Ramifications

Legal Challenge-New Delhi: Merely a day following the Centre’s notification on the implementation of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) rules, the Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) has made its move, approaching the Supreme Court to contest the decision. With its roots primarily in Kerala, the party is adamant about halting the implementation of the law, deeming it “unconstitutional” and asserting its discriminatory impact on the Muslim community.

Legal Challenge

Legal Challenge-Enacted in 2019, the Citizenship Amendment Act facilitates non-Muslim migrants from Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Afghanistan fleeing religious persecution to pursue Indian citizenship. Individuals from Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi, or Christian backgrounds from these nations, who arrived in India on or before December 31, 2014, are eligible to seek citizenship under the CAA.

Legal Challenge-IUML’s stance against the law isn’t new; it was one of the initial challengers back in 2019. Central to its petition is the contention that the exclusion of Muslims from the citizenship eligibility list violates the fundamental right to equality as enshrined in Article 14 of the Constitution.

Legal Challenge-Previously, IUML had urged for a temporary halt in implementing the Act, but the Centre had assured the court that the law wouldn’t come into force until the rules were formally notified.

The recent petition emphasizes the necessity of suspending the implementation of CAA rules until the Supreme Court adjudicates on the 250 pending petitions questioning the constitutional validity of the Act. According to the petition, the preamble of the Constitution underscores India as a secular nation, thus necessitating any enacted law to be devoid of religious biases.

The Centre’s announcement on the preceding evening triggered varied responses across the nation, ranging from jubilation to protest. Members of the Matua community in Bengal and Sindhi refugees in Bhopal expressed their joy through celebratory gatherings. However, dissent simmered in certain regions, notably in Assam, where protests erupted against the new citizenship rules, citing concerns over potential mass migration into the border state. Elsewhere, demonstrators criticized the law for its perceived discrimination against the Muslim populace.

In the realm of politics, the Opposition, particularly the Congress party, directed its criticism towards the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), questioning the timing of the Act’s implementation, particularly in the context of impending Lok Sabha polls.

Jairam Ramesh, a Congress general secretary, levied allegations against the BJP, suggesting a deliberate attempt to polarize voters in Assam and West Bengal.

“It took them 4 years and 3 months to bring this rule. Modi Government sought nine extensions from the Supreme Court and took 4 years and 3 months before notifying the rules last night,” remarked Mr. Ramesh in a post on X.

In essence, the legal challenge mounted by IUML against the Citizenship Amendment Act sets the stage for a significant legal and sociopolitical battle, with implications extending beyond the confines of judicial corridors to the broader national discourse on citizenship and religious inclusion.

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