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February 2020
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Ishant is hitting good areas, Prithvi should follow instincts: Kohli hints on playing XI        PCB chief hints at Pakistan giving up Asia Cup hosting rights        First 5G handset in India likely to be priced at Rs 50,000        Coronavirus outbreak to hit global growth; to have limited impact on India: RBI Guv        Death toll from China virus surges past 2,000        Necessary to prevent statelessness when nationality laws are changed: UN chief        Maha CM visits Shivneri Fort on Shivaji''s birth anniversary        Can transport minister come to explain govt proposal for introducing EVs, asks SC        SC upheld right to protest but other citizens also have rights: Interlocutors at Shaheen Bagh        Won't rule out playing 2023 World Cup, says Taylor        Sachin Tendulkar wins Laureus Sporting Moment Award for 2011 WC triumph        Messi, Hamilton share Laureus World Sportsman of Year honour; Biles gets third award        Kerala tourism eyes robust growth in domestic tourist footfalls in 2020        RBI Governor says no reason to doubt govt will meet fiscal deficit targets        UK budget on March 11 as planned: new finance minister        Wuhan hospital director dies of coronavirus        Opening of Kartarpur Corridor practical proof of Pakistan's desire for peace, says UN chief        People of Delhi taught a lesson to BJP which it will remember for long time: Gehlot        Delhi court sends Sharjeel to judicial custody till Mar 3 in New Friends Colony anti-CAA violence case        Prashant Kishor questions Nitish Kumar's development in Bihar        
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Main News
Rajya Sabha passes Citizenship Amendment Bill
 
New Delhi: Rajya Sabha on Wednesday approved the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, completing the legislative procedure for giving Indian citizenship to non-Muslim migrants from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh.

Replying to a six-and-a-half-hour debate on the bill, Home Minister Amit Shah said the legislation seeks to provide citizenship to persecuted minorities in the three countries and not take away citizenship of anyone.

He rejected the Opposition charge that the bill was against Muslims and said they have nothing to fear.

The Bill was passed with 125 votes in favour and 105 against it. Besides BJP, its allies such as JD-U and SAD, the legislation was supported by AIADMK, BJD, TDP and YSR-Congress.

Earlier the House rejected motions to send the bill to a select committee of the House with 124 members voting against it as compared to 99 in its favour.

The House also rejected several amendments moved by opposition members to the bill, most by voice vote.

The Bill was passed by Lok Sabha on Monday. It will now go to the President for his assent.

On why persecuted minorities from countries such as Sri Lanka were not part of the legislation, Shah said Tamils from the island country had been given Indian citizenship in past and the present law is to tackle a specific problem

To repeated questions from opposition of Muslims being left out, he said Muslims from other countries have the right to apply for Indian citizenship as per existing rules. As many as 566 Muslims have been given citizenship, he said.

He attacked opposition the Congress saying statements by the party's leaders match those of Pakistani leaders on not just the citizenship bill but also on scrapping of Article 370.

Asserting that neither the citizenship bill, nor the previously passed legislation making practice of triple talaq punishable and the scrapping Article 370 are anti-Muslim, he said the present legislation is to give citizenship and does not to take away citizenship of anyone.

Indian Muslims are citizens of the country and will remain so, he said. "Citizenship of Indian Muslims is not being taken away."

"Citizenship bill is not to snatch anyone's Indian citizenship. Muslims have no need to fear or worry," he said.

Shah said the bill seeks to correct the wrong done by the partition of the country on religious lines. He went on to attack the Congress for alleged double speak on the issue, saying the party had during its rule given Indian citizenship to 13,000 Hindus and Sikhs from Pakistan without raising a word about the same for other communities.

He also said the bill does not violate Article 14 of the Constitution as it does not prohibit laws based on reasonable classification.

Muslims have not been included for giving citizenship because the proposed law is for persecuted minorities in the three countries, he said.


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