Pakistan has described India’s Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) as “partisan”. It looks at the bill as New Delhi’s “malicious intent” to “interfere” in the domestic matters of neighbouring countries! Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has called the bill a step towards realising the RSS’s de=ream of a “Hindu Rashtra”.
Pakistan’s Foreign Office issued a statement after midnight, saying, “We condemn the legislation as regressive and discriminatory, which is in violation of all relevant international conventions and norms, and a glaring attempt by India to interfere in the neighbouring countries with malafide (sic) intent”. It “is premised on a falsehood (sic) and is in complete violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international covenants on (the) elimination of all forms of discrimination based on religion or belief. The Lok Sabha legislation is also in complete contravention of various bilateral agreements between Pakistan and India, particularly the one concerning security and rights of minorities in the respective countries.”
Pakistan said that the bill was a combination of a radical “Hindutva ideology and aspirations of the dominant class” in the region on the basis of religion and the intention of interfering in the internal affairs of neighbouring countries. “Pakistan rejects it completely,” it said and added, “India’s claim is false in that it describes itself as the home to minorities who are allegedly facing persecution in neighbouring countries.”
Pakistan sees Kashmir even in CAB
The Pakistani Foreign Office said that 80 million people had been affected by India’s action in Jammu and Kashmir and this reflected government policies. The bill, according to the statement, “has exposed the hollowness of claims of democracy and secularism” in India. An agenda of the majority is behind this and it has brought the anti-Muslim mentality of RSS-BJP to the world, Pakistan says.
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan today tweeted, “We strongly condemn Indian Lok Sabha citizenship legislation which violates all norms of int human rights law & bilateral agreements with Pak. It is part of the RSS “Hindu Rashtra” design of expansionism propagated by the fascist Modi Govt.”
Imran’s tweet refers to the bilateral agreement and ‘reality’
The bilateral agreement between India and Pakistan Khan is referring to was signed between the then Prime Ministers Jawaharlal Nehru and Liaquat Ali Khan in 1950.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah, while presenting the bill, had said in the Lok Sabha on 9 December that India had followed the Nehru-Liaquat agreement seriously, but religious minorities continued to be persecuted in Pakistan. Shah had said there had been a big decline in the population of minorities in the last 72 years, whereas the situation in India is reversed.
The bill was passed by an overwhelming majority (311-80) after intense discussion in the Lok Sabha late on Monday. It followed seven hours of intense debate over the bill that seeks to accept as Indian citizens such non-Muslims who came to India as refugees from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan till 31 December 2014.
The bill says India is granting citizenship to people who have suffered religious persecution. Such refugees will not be considered illegal migrants once the bill becomes law.
While presenting the bill in the Lok Sabha, Shah made it clear that people of any religion need not be afraid under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government. He emphasised that this bill would provide relief to the minorities who were victims of atrocities in the three neighbouring countries.