New Delhi, Dec 31 : With many crucial initiatives taken by the Union Home Ministry in 2019, the abrogation of Article 370 and Citizenship Amendment Act emerge as landmark decisions taken by it this year.
Two months after assuming the charge of the Ministry, Union Home Minister Amit Shah took a historic decision to repeal the Article 370 and 35 A through the Jammu and Kashmir (re-organisation) Act 2019. The Act, passed by Parliament, bifurcated the State into two separate Union Territories. Before the introduction of the Bill in the Rajya Sabha on August 5, the Home Ministry deployed huge para- military forces in the Kashmir Valley with a complete clamp down on communication and detained hundreds of people including three former Chief Ministers Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti with whom the BJP had formed a coalition Government in the state.
In recently-concluded Winter Session of the Parliament, the Home Ministry brought the controversial Citizenship Amendment Bill which sparked off nationwide protests. Over 20 people have lost their lives in the violence during anti-CAA protests in different parts of the country so far.
The CAA provides citizenship to the prosecuted members of Hindu, Sikh, Christian, Jain, Parsi and Buddhist communities who have come to India from Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh till December 31,2014. Besides, important legislations that were successfully pushed by the Ministry include National Investigation Agency (Amendment) Act, 2019, Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment Act, 2019, Special Protection Group (Amendment) Bill, 2019 which aim to increase operational efficiency of SPG in ensuring the security of the Prime Minister alone during the office. Other crucial legislations piloted by the MHA and passed by Parliament include Arms (Amendment) Bill, 2019, Protection of Human Rights (Amendment) Bill, 2019 and Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu (Merger of Union Territories) Bill, 2019, aiming at the administrative efficiency, better service delivery and effective implementation of both central and state government schemes.
The Home Ministry also got the Parliament's nod on the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment Act, 2019 by which Centre may declare any individual as a terrorist. The Ministry released the new map of India showing Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) as a part of newly created Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir and Gilgit – Baltistan as a part of Ladakh UT as a sovereign part of India.
The Ministry's decision to withdraw SPG security cover from Congress president Sonia Gandhi, Congress MP Rahul Gandhi and General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra evoked a strong reaction from the Congress. The Gandhi family members have been provided the CRPF Z-plus security cover. The Kartarpur corridor for Dera Baba Nanak shrine in Gurdaspur district of Punjab to Gurudwara Darbar Sahib in Pakistan with visa free movement of Indian pilgrims was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in November on the occasion of the 550 birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev, the first Sikh Guru. (UNI)