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Misplaced, misinformed, unwarranted: MEA on remarks by US on CAA

The MEA statement on Friday came after the US expressed concerns over the CAA

Misplaced, misinformed, unwarranted: MEA on remarks by US on CAA

MEA spokesperson Randhir Jaiswal (ANI)

NEW DELHI: External Affairs Ministry has said that the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) is an internal matter of India and that those who have a “limited understanding of India’s pluralistic traditions” should not make “misplaced, misinformed, and unwarranted” comments on the legislation.

The MEA statement on Friday came after the US expressed concerns over the CAA, which was notified earlier this week.

In a press briefing on Friday, the official spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs, Randhir Jaiswal said, “Lectures by those who have a limited understanding of India’s pluralistic traditions and the region’s post-partition history are best not attempted. Partners and wellwishers of India should welcome the intent with which this step has been taken.”

“The CAA is about giving citizenship, not about taking away citizenship, so this must be underlined. It addresses the issue of statelessness, provides human dignity, and supports human rights. As regards the US State Department’s statement on the implementation of CAA, and there have been comments made by several others, we are of the view that it is misplaced, misinformed, and unwarranted,” Jaiswal said.

Jaiswal underscored that the Citizenship Amendment Act 2019 is an internal matter of India and is in keeping with India’s inclusive traditions and a long-standing commitment to human rights.

“The act grants a safe haven to persecuted minorities belonging to Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Parsi and Christian communities from Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh who have entered India on or before December 31, 2014,” the MEA spokesperson said.

Jaiswal said that the constitution of India guarantees freedom of religion to all its citizens, and there are no grounds for any concern or treatment of minorities.

“Vote bank politics should not determine views about a laudable initiative to help those in distress,” he said.

The United States on Thursday that it is “concerned” about the notification of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) in India, adding that it is “closely monitoring” the implementation of the act.

“We are closely monitoring how this act will be implemented. Respect for religious freedom and equal treatment under the law for all communities are fundamental democratic principles,” US State Department Spokesperson, Matthew Miller told reporters at his daily briefing on Thursday (local time).

The Union Home Ministry notified rules for the implementation of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) on March 11, days ahead of the announcement of the Lok Sabha election schedule.

The CAA rules, introduced by the Narendra Modi government and passed by Parliament in 2019, aim to confer Indian citizenship to persecuted non-Muslim migrants–including Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, Buddhists, Parsis, and Christians–who migrated from Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Afghanistan and arrived in India before December 31, 2014.

Citizenship (Amendment) Rules, 2024 enable persons eligible under CAA-2019 to apply for the grant of Indian citizenship and applications are to be submitted in a completely online mode for which a web portal has been provided by the government.

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