Rajnath Singh set to table contentious Citizenship Bill in Rajya Sabha

Rajnath Singh set to table contentious Citizenship Bill in Rajya Sabha

Agency News

New Delhi, Feb 12 : Sticking to its earlier stance and braving stiff resistance from various quarters including BJP's allies, the Modi government is all set to table in Rajya Sabha the contentious Citizenship Amendment Bill on Tuesday.

According to revised business agenda of the Upper House, after the debate and adoption of Motion of Thanks to President's address, Home Minister Rajnath Singh is likely to introduce the draft law on Tuesday.

It was passed in Lok Sabha on January 8 during winter session of Parliament. Students organisations including influential All Assam Students Union (AASU), political parties and various other stake holders have opposed the Bill.

In BJP-ruled Manipur, Section 144 has been imposed in some vulnerable locations due to 'situation arising out of intense agitation' launched by various Civil Society Organisations.

Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh earlier urged Home Minister Rajnath Singh to keep Manipur out of the purview of the Bill. The security arrangements have been beefed up in Mizoram, Nagaland and Meghalaya also.

Locals feel the provisions of the Bill would be a threat to the indigenous and native tribal poupulation in the region. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has, however, said the apprehensions were misplaced. He assured the people of the northeast that the draft will in no way cause harm the interest of people of Assam and other states in the region.

The Citizenship Amendment Bill initially piloted in 2016 and which was examined by a JPC seeks to provide Indian citizenship to non-Muslims from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan after six years of residence in India.

"We are emotional people and also committed to the interests of the natives. Therefore, Mizoram Kohhran Hruaitute Committee (MKHC) - a common conglomeration of church bodies in the state- would offered a mass prayer on Saturday and Sunday (Feb 10) to ensure that the Bill is defeated in the Rajya Sabha," senior church leader Pu R Lalrinsanga said in Aizawl.

Meghalaya Chief Minister and NPP leader Conrad Sangma has threatened to quit the BJP-led North East Democratic Alliance if the Bil is given nod in Rajya Sabha.

“India is duty bound to give support to these people," Prime Minister said in Guwahati addressing a mammoth rally.

"They might have come from Pakistan, Afghanistan or even Bangladesh.....Before 1947, they were all part of India only. When country was partitioned, the minorities there like Hindus, Christians, Jains, Parsis and Buddhists had stayed back there," he has said adding - but unfortunately they were 'tortured' and had to come to India. (UNI)