After Kerala, Congress govt in Punjab passes resolution against CAA in assembly by voice vote
State parliamentary affairs minister Brahm Mohindra introduced anti-CAA resolution, urging Centre to repeal the Act; AAP supported resolution, while BJP and ally Shiromani Akali Dal opposed it. SAD asks Congress leaders if repeal means they are opposed to citizenship given to Sikhs, Christians
The Punjab assembly on Friday passed a resolution by voice vote against the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act, the second state in the country to do so after Kerala.
The resolution moved by parliamentary affairs minister Brahm Mohindra was passed after over three hours of discussion on the second day of the two-day special session of the assembly.
While the ruling Congress and main opposition Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) supported the resolution, the BJP opposed it.
The Shiromani Akali Dal, a key ally of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led government at the Centre, sought the inclusion of Muslims in the list of communities that could be granted citizenship under the amended law.
The CAA provides for granting citizenship to Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians, who had migrated to India before December 31, 2014, but not to members of the Muslim community. The Kerala assembly was the first to pass the resolution against the amended citizenship Act.
During the debate, Congress minister Charanjit Singh Channi and Shiromani Akali Dal MLA Bikram Singh Majithia sparred, taking personal digs at each other after the minister questioned the Akali stand on CAA.
Speaking for his party, SAD legislature party leader Sharanjit Singh Dhillon said, “We are opposed to this resolution but want Muslims on the list of communities eligible under the CAA.”
Turning to Congress legislators, Dhillon said, “You are seeking a repeal of the CAA so are you opposed to the persecuted Pakistani Sikhs and Christians who have benefited under the Act?”
CENSUS AS PER OLD PROCESS: CAPT
On the National Register of Citizens (NRC) and National Population Register (NPR), Dhillon asked Congress members in the House, “Two NPR surveys were conducted during Manmohan Singh’s tenure as Prime Minister, so why the opposition now?”
Chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh said that the census would be carried out as per the old process. “We will not allow changes such as the NPR,” he said.
During a cabinet meeting on Tuesday, Amarinder and his colleagues had expressed concern over the implications of the “blatantly unconstitutional and divisive CAA, NRC and NPR”.
The Kerala Assembly had recently passed a resolution demanding the scrapping of the CAA, becoming the first state in the country to do so.