The Rajasthan High Court has asked the Central Government to explain the procedure of the grant of citizenship to the persecuted minorities of neighbouring countries in the light of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019.
The bench of Justice Vijay Bishnoi and Justice Manoj Kumar Garg was considering a writ petition suo motu registered by the Court in 2017. Amicus curiae Sajjan Singh Rathore informed the bench about the enactment of Citizenship Amendment Act 2019.
Granting time to the parties to address these issues, the bench posted the case on 3rd February 2020. The order reads thus:
"Learned counsel for the parties seek some time to address the issue regarding the grant of citizenship to the persecuted minorities of neighbouring countries in the light of the Citizenship(Amendment) Act, 2019, which came into force on 12th December,2019. Time prayed for is granted.List the matter on 3.2.2020."
It is pertinent to state that though CAA was notified on 12/12/2019, it is yet to come in force, as its date of enforcement is yet to be notified.
In 2017, the Court had taken cognizance of a report of "Dainik Bhaskar", that the District Administration of Jodhpur is taking coercive steps to deport the Pakistan nationals without examining their entitlement to have citizenship of India. In its order, the Court had observed thus:
The traces of the tragedy of partition in Indian subcontinent much back in the year 1947 are yet visible with deep injuries in our society and one example of that is the desire of the persons belonging to minorities in Pakistan as well as Bangladesh to have shelter in India being discriminated for socio-economic and political reasons. A huge number of migrants from Pakistan are settled in different parts of the country including the western border. As a matter of fact, from the eastern part of the Pakistan, Pakistan nationals are migrating to India in big number.
The Court had also noted that thousands of such persons are having camps in the Districts of Barmer, Jaisalmer, Bikaner, Ganganagar and Jodhpur in the State of Rajasthan. It had said:
"Such migrants made several requests to the Government of India to award them Indian citizenship and the Government of India too acted upon time to time and issued several notifications/circulars to grant citizenship to such persons. In spite of the efforts made by the Government several people are yet residing in India without having Indian citizenship. Such people are in India being said to be persecuted in Pakistan. Being not Indian citizen the Government on several occasions considered it appropriate to deport them to their native country, but the predicament is that such persons, though facing enormous difficulties, for no fault on their part are not getting any peaceful space to have dignified life, a minimum requirement for human being."
On 1st September 2017, the Division bench had also passed an order directing the authorities not to deport any Pakistan migrant belonging to minority communities, if he/she has applied for long term visa or otherwise intend for that without having special reasons for security purpose. Later, directions regarding issuance of Long Term Visa to these migrants were passed.
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