UN body to move Supreme Court over CAA, India says our internal matter
Last week, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet had expressed serious concern at the CAA and Delhi riots and called on India’s leadership to prevent further violence.Updated: Mar 03, 2020 18:46 IST
The UN human rights chief intends to file an application in the Supreme Court in connection with the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), prompting New Delhi to say on Tuesday that no foreign party has locus standi on issues related to the country’s sovereignty.
External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said India’s permanent mission in Geneva was informed on Monday evening by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, about the plans to file an intervention application.
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“The CAA is an internal matter of India and concerns the sovereign right of the Indian Parliament to make laws. We strongly believe that no foreign party has any locus standi on issues pertaining to India’s sovereignty,” Kumar said.
He added, “We are clear that the CAA is constitutionally valid and complies with all requirements of our constitutional values. It is reflective of our long standing national commitment in respect of human rights issues arising from the tragedy of the Partition of India.”
Kumar further said India is a democracy governed by the rule of law. “We all have utmost respect for and full trust in our independent judiciary. We are confident that our sound and legally sustainable position would be vindicated by the Supreme Court,” he said.
Last week, Bachelet had expressed serious concern at the CAA and riots in Northeast Delhi and called on India’s leadership to prevent further violence.
Shortly after it was passed by Parliament in December last year, the United Nations human rights office had described the CAA as “fundamentally discriminatory in nature”, and had called for it to be reviewed.
The government said that the CAA was aimed at protecting minorities from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan, but the UN body noted that the law “does not extend the same protection to Muslims, including minority sects”.
The US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) too appealed to the Trump administration for action. It had earlier asked the Trump administration to consider sanctions against India’s top leadership if the law was approved.