New Delhi: Kerala Governor Arif Mohammad Khan on Thursday hit out against the Pinarayi Vijayan-led CPI(M) government for approaching the Supreme Court to challenge the contentious Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) without consulting him, calling it a “breach of courtesy”.
“I’m not saying that what they did is wrong. I have no issue with them going to the Supreme Court. But the common courtesy demanded that prior permission should have been taken from me,” Khan alleged.
“I being constitutional head came to know about it by going through newspapers. Clearly, I am not just a rubber stamp. This is a breach of protocol and a breach of courtesy… If not the approval, they could have just informed me,” he told reporters. Khan said that he would check if the state government can approach the top court without prior approval of the Governor.
The Left government of Kerala had challenged the Citizenship law passed by Centre on December and called it a violation of several articles of the Constitution, including the basic Right to Equality. The CAA goes beyond the basic principle of secularism that the Indian Constitution holds, the petition stated.
The controversial law that has led to scores of protests across states, paves a way for refugees from non-Muslim communities – including Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi and Christian – who have come from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan till December 31, 2014, to become Indian citizens.
Notably, Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan has been one of the most vocal Chief Ministers, along with his West Bengal counterpart Mamata Banerjee, to voice against the CAA. Kerala became the first state to reject the Centre’s law last month, with CM Vijayan even declaring that ‘no detention centres would come up in Kerala.’
Even as the agitation against CAA continues to grow across the nation, the contentious law came into effect on January 10.