Protests Continue Over India’s Religion-Based Citizenship Bill


India has deployed its army cut four G. internet imposed curfews and canceled trains and flights and parts of the northeast Indian authorities were responding to thousands of people who protest after citizenship amendment bill passed last night that law changes the rules on who can become an Indian citizen and it uses religion as a criterion for citizenship for the first time and here's one for has been reporting on this new legislation and she's on the line from our bureau in Mumbai he learned hi Noel so what is this new law say what does it mean so the law makes undocumented migrants eligible for passports it's sort of like a path to citizenship like an amnesty India has very strict citizenship laws if you come into the country without a visa you normally have no path to citizenship and this law changes that it grants passports to religious minorities from three neighboring countries Pakistan Afghanistan in Bangladesh there's a majority Muslim countries but to be eligible for this you have to be Christian Hindu Buddhist seek or a member of a couple other smaller fates you cannot be Muslim so that exclusion of Muslims is what has many people upset they say this law violates the secularism and equal rights enshrined in India's constitution and today opposition lawmakers filed an appeal to the Supreme Court the president has not yet signed it into law but already it faces legal challenges okay so at the heart of this is that people are protesting because they see this law not as something that helps people from these other faiths but as Peeta but as a law that the I. B. is basically on its face anti Muslim yes some people are protesting because of that the law doesn't apply to many persecuted groups in South Asia who happened to be Muslims like the opportunities in Pakistan the house are as in Afghanistan rocking the Muslims there are hundreds of thousands of them in refugee camps in neighboring Bangladesh in this doesn't apply to them but lots of protests over this are in awesome that's one of the most diverse state in India's northeast and it's where immigration is a very sensitive issue people are worried that undocumented migrants as they become legal will stay permanently will dilute local culture will compete for local jobs and two people are not some are angry because also that's where the government is conducting something called the NRC the national register of citizens it's like this local census designed to root out undocumented migrants and about two million people most of the Muslims have been unable to provide documents to prove their citizenship and are therefore slated to lose it even people whose families have been here for generations so in Assam all this is happening at the same time that's why many there and elsewhere see this as unfair and by the way they have some support abroad and Human Rights Watch Amnesty International even a U. S. government advisory panel all called this law on fair and called it anti Muslim and that US panel went as far as to call for sanctions against India's home minister who introduced this introduced this bill that's interesting so the center of this is an awesome basically what the hell bigger the protest when using a curfew is in place this morning thousands of people defied that curfew though they burned tires in the streets it's evening now darkness has fallen things have gone quieter protests have actually been going on all week but earlier we saw vehicles burned up telephone poles toppled politicians homes vandalized dozens of protesters have been arrested tear gas was fired at them president of prime minister Narendra Modi's has called for calm he tweeted out a statement

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