Kerala challenges Citizenship Act in Indian Supreme Court
Indian Supreme Court
The Kerala government has also challenged the validity of changes made in 2015 to the Passport law and the Foreigners (Amendment) Order, regularising the stay of non-Muslim migrants from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan who had entered India before 2015.The Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), eases the path for non-Muslims in the neighbouring Muslim-majority nations of Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh to become Indian citizens. Critics fear that the CAA, along with a proposed National Register of Citizens (NRC), will discriminate against Muslims.
The Kerala petition says the CAA violates Articles 14, 21 and 25 of the constitution.
While Article 14 is about the right to equality, Article 21 says “no person will be deprived of life or personal liberty except according to a procedure established by law”. Under Article 25, “all persons are equally entitled to freedom of conscience.”
Several non-BJP governments have refused to carry out the NRC in an attempt to stave off the enforcement of the citizenship law.
Over 60 writ petitions have been filed in Supreme Court so far against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act. Various political parties, NGOs and also MPs have challenged the law.
The Supreme Court will hear the petitions on January 22.During the last hearing, petitioners didn’t ask that the law be put on hold as the CAA was not in force. The Act has, however, come into force from January 10 through a home ministry notification.