TMC’s Mahua Moitra rushes to SC against citizenship law; she will have to wait
Mahua Moitra, the Trinamool Congress lawmaker had asked the Supreme Court to hear her petition against the Citizenship Act today or on Monday.Updated: Dec 13, 2019 17:30 IST
Trinamool Congress MP Mahua Moitra on Friday filed a petition in the Supreme Court to challenge the Citizenship Amendment Act and asked the top court to hear the case right away, either today or Monday. But the request to schedule a hearing today wasn’t accepted by Chief Justice of India SA Bobde. She was told to approach the court registry officer who looks at cases to be mentioned before the bench when her counsel insisted for a listing on Monday next week. It is learnt that the petition by Mahua Moitra has now been numbered.
The Indian Union Muslim League, a Kerala-based party that sends four lawmakers to Parliament, had earlier petitioned the court to quash the law that it insisted, discriminates on the basis of religion and strikes at the root of the concept of secularism embodied in the Indian Constitution.
The two petitions have challenged the change in the citizenship law that enables immigrants of faiths other than Islam from three countries - Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan - to get Indian citizenship on the ground that they came to India due to religious persecution because they are minorities.
Many opposition parties had criticised the change in Parliament this week that has also reopened ethnic fault lines in regions such as Assam, which have a history of anti-immigration movements, especially against people from Bangladesh.
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The changes to the citizenship law imply that any person belonging to Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi or Christian communities from Afghanistan, Bangladesh or Pakistan would not be counted as illegal migrants even if they come without documents. Also, people from these communities and countries would be eligible to get citizenship by naturalisation in half the time.