The Jamiat Ulama-e-Hind on Monday moved the Supreme Court against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act of 2019, saying the new law classifies immigrants without any “intelligible differentia” and ignores several religiously persecuted minorities like Ahmadiyyas, Zikris, Baha’i, Kalasha and Shia sects of Pakistan.
The organisation, through its general secretary, Syed Maulana Mahmood Madani, said the new law would lead to devastating religious discrimination in Assam, where several lakh Hindus and Muslims have been excluded from the final list published on August 31.
“The consequence of the Amendment Act, 2019 would be that the Hindu migrants excluded from the final list of NRC for the residents in Assam published on August 31, 2019, would be entitled to get benefit of naturalisation under Section 6B of the Citizenship Act. However, the Muslim migrants on equal footing with the Hindu migrants, are denied the same, which is highly arbitrary and discriminatory,” a release issued by the organisation on the contents of its petition, represented by advocate Shakil Ahmad Syed, said.
It said this would be an outcome of the new law in Assam where lakhs of people have already been excluded from the NRC final list because of their illiteracy, improper leading of evidence i.e. filing photocopy of necessary and relevant documents, non-examination of witnesses, minor discrepancies in their age and spelling of name in different documents.
The writ petition contended that the new law excludes Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians from the definition of ‘illegal migrant.’ However the same grace is not shown to Muslims. This discrimination on the basis of religion is in violation of the fundamental right to equality under Article 14 of the Constitution.
“Government of India has announced the plan to start Pan-India NRC. If the people fail to prove their citizenship because of documentary evidence they would be excluded from the National Register of Citizens. The person belonging to Hindu, Sikh, Jain, Christian and Parsis excluded from the NRC would be entitled to get protection of Section 6B of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019, but excluded Muslims would not get the benefit of the same,” the organisation said.