New Delhi: More than 150 members of the European Union (EU) Parliament have drafted a resolution condemning the contentious Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), calling it ‘discriminatory’ and ‘dangerously divisive’ and calling on the government to engage with the protesters and listen to their demands to withdraw the Act.
The resolution, which is five-page long, has been drafted by 154 members of the European United Left/Nordic Green Left (GUE/NGL) group in the EU Parliament. It was tabled on January 22 and will be taken up for a debate on Wednesday and a vote a day later.
Noting that the CAA marks a ‘dangerous shift’ in the way citizenship is determined in India, the resolution also alleged that the exercise would also lead to the ‘largest statelessness crisis’ in the world and cause immense human suffering.
In the resolution, the lawmakers further accused the government of ‘discriminating against, harassing and prosecuting minorities’ and silencing dissenters including human rights groups, civil society members and media critical of the ruling establishment. They also expressed ‘deep concern’ that India was creating grounds to strip Muslims of their citizenship and that the CAA, along with the proposed National Register of Citizens (NRC) would render Muslims ‘stateless.’
Citing Article 15 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) as well as the India-EU Strategic Joint Action Plan (JAP) in November 2005, the resolution also accused India of ‘violating’ India’s international obligations on citizenship.
The CAA proposes citizenship for non-Muslim minorities from Muslim-majority Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan, if they fled religious persecution and entered India before December 31, 2014. However, it is the absence of Muslims from the list that has triggered massive protests across the country, including several women-led sit-ins, like the one at national capital’s Shaheen Bagh.