Just after midnight on Tuesday, 10 December, the Lok Sabha passed the contentious Citizenship Amendment Bill with 311 members favouring it and 80 voting against. It will now be tabled in the Rajya Sabha for its nod.
Here’s a look at which parties expressed support for the CAB and which were against it:
Parties for the Bill:
- Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)
- Janata Dal (United)
- Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD)
- Lok Jansatta Party (LJP)
- Biju Janata Dal
- YSR Congress Party
- Shiv Sena*
*In a notable turn, Shiv Sena, which recently left the National Democratic Alliance to ally with the Congress and NCP in Maharashtra, also supported the Bill. On Monday morning, an editorial in the Sena mouthpiece Saamna had said that the CAB was vote-bank politics and against the interest of the nation.
Parties against the Bill:
- Indian National Congress
- All India Trinamool Congress (TMC)
- Indian Union Muslim League (IUML)
- All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF)
- All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM)
- Samajwadi Party
- Communist Party of India (Marxist)
- Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK)
- Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP)
- Aam Aadmi Party
- Rashtriya Janata Dal
Opposition leaders opposed the Bill saying it violates constitutional provisions and amounts to thinly-veiled religious discrimination.
“We are opposing the bill because it is discriminatory in nature. It wreaks havoc on the very foundations of the Constitution. This is a step towards Hindu Rashtra,” said opposition leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury.
Even JD(U) leader Prashant Kishor expressed his disappointment with his party’s support for a bill “that discriminates right of citizenship on the basis of religion.”
Responding to the Opposition’s uproar, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, who introduced the Bill, said people of any religion should not be afraid under the Modi government.
He took a swipe at the Congress, saying that had India not been divided on religious lines in 1947, there would have been no need for this Bill.
The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill proposes that members of Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi and Christian communities, who have come from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan till 31 December 2014 facing religious persecution there, will not be treated as illegal immigrants but given Indian citizenship.
(With inputs from PTI)
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