Other States

Rajasthan Assembly passes resolution against CAA

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot during the ongoing session of the State Assembly, in Jaipur.

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot during the ongoing session of the State Assembly, in Jaipur.   | Photo Credit: PTI

Rajasthan is the third State to pass such a resolution after Punjab and Kerala.

The Rajasthan Assembly on Saturday passed a resolution urging the Union government to repeal the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), making the State the third one, after Kerala and Punjab, to confront the Centre on the issue. The resolution was passed by voice vote after a five-hour debate during which the BJP accused the ruling Congress of indulging in appeasement politics.

The House also asked the Centre to withdraw the new fields of information which have been sought for updating the National Population Register (NPR) 2020. The CAA violated the provisions of the Constitution and discriminated against people on religious grounds in the grant of citizenship, asserted Parliamentary Affairs Minister Shanti Dhariwal, while moving the resolution.

“The CAA is an onslaught on the secular structure of the Constitution,” Mr. Dhariwal said. “The Centre has not framed rules under the Act because it knows that they too will be challenged in the court... The CAA should not be implemented until the Supreme Court delivers its verdict on the petitions against the impugned amendment,” he added.

BJP members moved to the well of the House and raised slogans against the resolution. Leader of the Opposition Gulab Chand Kataria said the State Assembly was not empowered to challenge a statute enacted by the Parliament and that citizenship was a matter under the Centre. He said the Congress should stop appeasing a particular community and doing “vote bank politics”.

Rajasthan’s resolution is the first legislative document incorporating objections to the NPR and the proposed National Register of Citizens (NRC). Asking the Centre to start the Census work only after withdrawal of the new NPR questionnaire, the House in its resolution stated that a substantial section of the population believed that the NPR and the NRC had the same base as the CAA.

Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot said the CAA was the first law enacted in the history of the country that had discriminated on the ground of religion in violation of the constitutional provisions. “The CAA should be repealed because it violates Article 14 laying down equality before law and equal protection of laws,” he tweeted shortly after the resolution was passed.

“A large number of States have been opposing CAA-NRC, keeping in mind the public opinion at large. It is the duty of the Centre to keep the federal structure intact and strong. I urge the NDA government to withdraw the Act... The government should not make it a prestige issue,” Mr. Gehlot said.

While Mr. Gehlot asserted that the CAA was aimed at changing the basic principle of secularism, the House in its resolution said the people would face inconvenience with the proposed additional information sought under the NPR. “Assam is a live example of this. Large-scale protests are taking place all over the country. No provision has been made regarding migrants from neighbouring countries such as Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Nepal and Bhutan, which raises many questions,” the Assembly said.

Earlier in the day, the Assembly ratified the Constitution (126th) Amendment Bill passed by the Parliament last month for extending reservation for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in the Lok Sabha and State Assemblies for another 10 years.

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Printable version | Feb 24, 2020 12:05:52 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/rajasthan-assembly-passes-resolution-against-caa/article30651563.ece

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