A day after Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella termed situation surrounding the Citizenship Amendment Act as "sad", his company on Tuesday issued a far subtler statement on the contentious Act, that conveyed his optimism for an immigrant in India who could benefit the society and economy.
Commenting on the pressing need to protect national security, Nadella said that every country is bound to define borders and set an immigration policy accordingly.
He further said that being shaped by an Indian heritage and in view of his immigrant experience in the United States, he hopes to see an India where immigrants can strive for ambitious endeavours benefiting "Indian society and the economy at large".
"Every country will and should define its borders, protect national security and set immigration policy accordingly. And in democracies, that is something the people and their governments will debate and define within those bounds. I'm shaped by my Indian heritage, growing up in a multicultural India and my immigrant experience in the US. My hope is for an India where an immigrant can aspire to found a prosperous start-up or lead a multinational corporation benefiting Indian society and the economy at large," said the statement issued by Nadella.
Statement from Satya Nadella, CEO, Microsoft pic.twitter.com/lzsqAUHu3I
" Microsoft India (@MicrosoftIndia) January 13, 2020
As protests against the amended CAA continue across the country, Nadella on Monday termed the situation as "sad."
"I think what is happening is sad... It's just bad.... I would love to see a Bangladeshi immigrant who comes to India and creates the next unicorn in India or becomes the next CEO of Infosys," Nadella, speaking to editors at a Microsoft event said, reported Buzzfeed editor-in-chief Ben Smith.
Asked Microsoft CEO @satyanadella about India's new Citizenship Act. "I think what is happening is sad... It's just bad.... I would love to see a Bangladeshi immigrant who comes to India and creates the next unicorn in India or becomes the next CEO of Infosys" cc @PranavDixit
" Ben Smith (@BuzzFeedBen) January 13, 2020
Historian Ramchandra Guha, who has opposed the new citizenship law, welcomed Nadella's remarks.
I am glad Satya Nadella has said what he has. I wish that one of our own IT czars had the courage and wisdom to say this first. Or to say it even now. https://t.co/KsKbDUtMQk
" Ramachandra Guha (@Ram_Guha) January 13, 2020
Author Sadanand Dhume also shared his thoughts:
I'm somewhat surprised that Satya Nadella touched this issue, but not at all surprised that he disapproves of India's citizenship law. A successful firm like Microsoft is built on the principle of treating all people equally regardless of their faith. https://t.co/wcqspaZp4C
" Sadanand Dhume (@dhume) January 13, 2020
The Citizenship Amendment Act was passed by Parliament on 11 December. According to the legislation, members of Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi and Christian communities who have come from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan till 31 December, 2014, due to religious persecution will not be treated as illegal immigrants but given Indian citizenship.
Protests have broken out against the CAA across the country, with those opposing the law contending that it discriminates on the basis of religion and violates the Constitution. They also allege that the CAA along withe the National Register of Citizens (NRC) is intended to target the Muslim community in India.
With inputs from PTI