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Law Students Move SC Against Citizenship Amendment Act

LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK
13 Dec 2019 12:13 PM GMT
Law Students Move SC Against Citizenship Amendment Act
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Two law students are among various petitioners who have approached the Supreme Court challenging the contentious Citizenship Amendment Act 2019.Muneeb Ahmed Khan and Appurva Jain, students of Symbiosis Law School, have joined the the petition filed by Advocates Entesham Hashmi, Adeer Talib and journalist Ziya Us Salam impugning the Act.They argue that the Act is violative of Article 14 for...

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Two law students are among various petitioners who have approached the Supreme Court challenging the contentious Citizenship Amendment Act 2019.

Muneeb Ahmed Khan and Appurva Jain, students of Symbiosis Law School, have joined the the petition filed by Advocates Entesham Hashmi, Adeer Talib and journalist Ziya Us Salam impugning the Act.

They argue that the Act is violative of Article 14 for being discriminatory against Muslim community. It is further argued that the Act negated the concept of secularism, which is a basic feature of the Constitution of India.

"The religious basis of citizenship would be a negation not only of secularism, but also of liberalism, equality and justice. This Act in whole surpasses the entire preamble."

"This Act even before coming into action had created a sense of fear amongst the Muslims community of the country and diverse country like ours where hundreds of religions reside in one country, does not have any place for discrimination against one particular community. For centuries India has been a country of all religions and it should remain like that without any fear for any community. This Act in question is not unconstitutional but dangerous, as it will sure;y damage India's standing in the comity of nations" stated the petition.

The PIL prayed for the declaration of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 as unconstitutional, unenforceable and violative of Article 14 of the Constitution of India.

Another PIL has been filed by Peace Party & Dr. Mohd. Ayub. In addition to the Citizenship Amendment Act, it challenged the amendments made to Passport (Entry into India) Rules 1950 and Foreigners Order 1948 are illegal, arbitrary, discriminatory and violative of Article 14, 19 and 21 of the Constitution of India.

The petitioners said, "the amendments made to Passport (Entry into India) Rules 1950 and Foreigners Order 1948 seeks to make is to reduce the period of stay in India before illegal non-Muslim immigrants from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan from 14 years to six years which again is a clear discrimination against Muslim migrants."

The petitioners reiterated the fact that the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 is violative of Article 14 of the Constitution.

"Accordingly, the Act wants to create a class of refugees on the basis of religion which cannot be treated as permissible/reasonable classification. In order to pass the test of permissible/reasonable classification, two conditions as propounded by this Hon'ble Court in the case of State of West Bengal Vs Anwar Ali Sarkar, have to be satisfied:

the classification must be founded on an intelligible differentia which distinguishes person or thing that are grouped together from other left out;

the differentia must have a direct nexus to the object sought to be achieved by the statute in question.", said the petitioners.

The PIL prayed for the declaration of appropriate order by the court to declare the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 as well as the amendments made to Passport (Entry into India) Rules 1950 and Foreigners Order 1948 are illegal, arbitrary, discriminatory and violative of Article 14, 19 and 21 of the Constitution of India. 

Indian Union Muslim League, TMC MP Mahua Moitra, Congress MP Jairam Ramesh have also moved the apex court against the legislation.

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