The ignorance of India’s elected representatives about the Civics and Geography of the country was at display during the debate on Citizenship Amendment Bill, which seeks to provide Indian citizenship to members of communities, in minority in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh that have fled religious persecution. These communities include Hindus, Sikhs, Christians, Buddhists, Jains and Parsis, all of whom are in minority, and whose numbers have fallen drastically in each of the three countries.
The elected representatives of various parties asked that how Afghanistan is India’s neighbour.
Shiv Sena MP- Vinayak Raut asked for the relevance of Afghanistan’s inclusion and argued that either the government should include Nepal and Sri Lanka as well or delete Afghanistan.
DMK’s MP Dayanidhi Maran said ‘the government probably has the fear of the West, the fear of being isolated by West has crept into you and you had to include Christians in this bill. Also what about if Muslims from PoK want to come? What law do you have for that?’
Dayanidhi Maran,DMK in Lok Sabha: Probably the fear of the West, the fear of being isolated by West has creeped into you and you had to include Christians in this bill.Also what about if Muslims from PoK want to come? What law do you have for that? #CitizenshipAmendmentBill2019 pic.twitter.com/0Iu0jBe00x
— ANI (@ANI) December 9, 2019
Amit Shah schooled these MPs and reminded them that- Pakistan Occupied Kashmir is an integral part of India- and the country shares 106 km border with Afghanistan.
“We share a 106-km land border with Afghanistan. Maybe the opposition thinks PoK is not part of India,” said Shah.
India has always maintained that Pakistan occupied Kashmir is an integral part of India, and therefore, the country shares a 106 km border with Afghanistan, which is popularly known as Wakhan corridor. The official map of the country, to which majority of our MPs are ignorant shows the long strip that joins Afghanistan with India.
When India gets PoK, to which it is rightful owner, it will share a direct border with Afghanistan and Pakistan will have no direct access to China. India has repeatedly objected to the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), which passes through Pakistan Occupied Kashmir, as there is no other link between the Chinese and Pakistani border. When PoK comes under Indian control, the Chinese would be forced to take the Indian or Wakhan corridor route to reach Pakistan through the land.
The Wakhan corridor was annexed by the British to create a buffer between Tsarist Russia and British India. The British wanted a buffer between both empires to avoid direct Russian access to British India; it was a strategy related Great Game (a political and diplomatic confrontation that existed for most of the 19th century between the British Empire and the Russian Empire).