Busting all the myths and hullaballoo of the liberals over the citizenship amendment bill, leading legal eagle, Harish Salve has put a stop on all the misinformation with hard legal facts. The noted legal luminary Harish Salve, who represented India in Kulbhushan Jadhav case in the International Court of Justice (ICJ), defended the CAB and dismantled all the arguments including that the ‘moral argument’ and the invocation of ‘equality before law’ made by opposition parties against the proposed amendment.
Speaking over the invocation of Article 14 and 15 of the Constitution by the liberals, Salve clarified it for once and for all, that Article 14- right to equality does not apply here and those who are invoking it have “misplaced understanding of the Constitution” while Article 15 applies only to citizen of India, who reside in India.
'CAB is not anti-Muslim and doesn’t violate Art 14, 15 or even 21 of the Constitution,' India’s leading legal mind Harish Salve opines on Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) on India Upfront with Rahul Shivshankar. | #CABProtest pic.twitter.com/wGXQ5lIGa9
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“This is a narrow-tailored law (CAB) specifically meant to deal with those who are being persecuted by our three Islamic neighbours,” Salve said. He further said that the proposed CAB does not violate Articles 15 and 21 as these provisions of the Indian Constitution are only applicable to those who “live in India, reside in India, not those who want to enter India”. He also said that those arguing that the proposed law violates Article 14 have completely “misplaced understanding of the Constitution”.
Giving example of lion and lamb, he explained that one law for both of them cannot be termed equality hence every problem demands a specific law.
He added while detailing the problem of Rohingyas of Myanmar and Tamils of Sri Lanka that a law which address one evil does not need to address all the other similar evils.
On the question that the bill discriminates against the Muslims in three neighbouring Islamic countries, the noted lawyer said that somebody belonging to religion of state itself cannot be subjected to religious persecution. “This is not to open the gates for economic migration,” he said. “If somebody wants political asylum because he is being politically persecuted in that state, he’ll come under the general rule of asylum,” Salve said.
“This law doesn’t say that Muslims of neighbouring states will never be given citizenships,” he added.
Addressing the ‘moral argument’ against the bill that citizenship should not be provided on the basis of religion as it is against the spirit of the constitution, he said that in the three Islamic Republics mentioned in the bill, they have Islam as a state religion in their constitution itself, there is a problem faced by minorities and a narrow-tailored bill to address the problem is not against the secular nature of Indian Constitution. He also slammed those arguing that Parliament should not discuss the bill because of the lack of legislative competence.
On the question of persecution being faced by Shia, Hazaras and Ahmeddiyas in neighbouring states and why aren’t they included in the bill, the noted lawyer said, “In those states, you may have sections. The Shias and Sunnis have the problems, the Ahmeddiyas and the Shias and Sunnis have a problem,” He said that the different sects of Islam have intra-religion problems and that the religion divides on the basis of who follow Islamic faith and those who follow non-Islamic faiths.