CAA: Issues in the legal challenge to the Law

La Excellence IAS Academy

CAA: Issues in the legal challenge to the Law

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La Excellence IAS Academy | March 12, 2024 | Indian Polity

Syllabus: GS-II, Subject: Polity, Topic: legal issues, Issue: Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), 2019.

Context: Ministry of Home Affairs notified the Rules to implement the Citizenship Amendment Act-2019

The Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), 2019,

  • Granting citizenship to migrants belonging to the Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi, or Christian communities who entered India before December 31, 2014 from Pakistan, Afghanistan, or Bangladesh.
  • Certain areas, including tribal areas and those protected by the Inner Line system, exempted from the CAA.

It has been challenged in Supreme Court based on:

  1. A) violation of Article 14, which guarantees equality before the law.
  • Using religion as a criterion for citizenship violates the fundamental right to equality.
  • Government argues that excluding Muslims is justified because Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh are Islamic countries.
  1. B) Compatibility with the Assam Accord.
  • Clause 5 of the Assam Accord sets the base cut-off date for detecting “foreigners” as January 1, 1966, with provisions for regularization until March 24, 1971.
  • Section 6A of The Citizenship Act allows migrants arriving in Assam between January 1, 1966, and March 25, 1971, to seek citizenship.
  • A Constitution Bench has reserved its verdict on the validity of Section 6A.
  • Upholding March 24, 1971, as the effective cut-off could challenge the compatibility of the CAA with the Assam Accord.

Related Concepts:

The Assam Accord was an agreement between India’s government and Assam Movement leaders. Aimed to address the issue of illegal migrants in Assam.

Source: Indian Express

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