On Monday, the Supreme Court bench of Chief Justice UU Lalit and Justices Ravindra Bhat and Bela M. Trivedi heard petitions challenging the Citizenship Amendment Act, 2019.
During the hearing, Senior Advocate P Wilson, representing the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK), asked the Centre for a response on the applicability of the 2019 Act to Hindu Tamils in Sri Lanka. He stated that we must also include Sri Lankan Tamils.
The case has been delayed until December 6, 2022, with the parties directed to complete their submissions in the meanwhile.
The Citizenship Act of 1955 is amended by the 2019 Act to liberalise the requirements for giving citizenship to non-Muslim migrants who arrived in India from Pakistan, Bangladesh, or Afghanistan before December 31, 2014. According to the Centre, the Act is intended to protect minorities who fled these nations owing to religious persecution.
The DMK, one of over 200 petitioners who have challenged the Act, has argued that limiting the benefit of the amendment to only three countries makes no sense. The party claims that the designation is unfair because minorities that face similar persecution in other nations are excluded.
Recently, the Madras High Court (Madurai Bench) ruled that the principles of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act 2019 might be made applicable to Hindu Tamils, who were the principal victims of racial strife in Sri Lanka. The Madras High Court bench of Justice G. R. Swaminathan noted this, taking into account the fact that Sri Lanka is not covered by the CAA 2019.
CASE: Indian Union of Muslim League and Others. v. UoI & Others