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Home » National » Centre likely to notify CAA rules before announcement of LS poll schedule: Sources

Centre likely to notify CAA rules before announcement of LS poll schedule: Sources

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New Delhi, Feb 27

The Central government is likely to notify the rules for the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) before the Model Code of Conduct (MCC) comes into play ahead of the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

Earlier this month, Union Home Minister Amit Shah had said that the CAA would be implemented before the Lok Sabha elections this year. Now, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) could notify the CAA rules any time before MCC comes into effect.

The CAA amends the Citizenship Act of 1955 to provide Indian citizenship to migrants from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan who belong to Hindu, Sikh, Jain, Parsi, Buddhist, and Christian communities and had entered India on or before December 31, 2014, due to religious persecution in their home countries. The CAA will help refugees from these neighbouring countries, who don’t have documents.

Sources further said that an online portal is ready for registrations.

In what is seen as a precursor to CAA, powers have already been given to the district authorities to issue long-term visas, sources said.

Over 30 district magistrates and home secretaries of nine states were given powers to grant Indian citizenship to Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians coming from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan under the Citizenship Act, 1955.

The CAA was enacted by the Parliament on December 11, 2019. The issue had drawn massive protests across India.

The Model Code of Conduct, a set of directives issued by the Election Commission of India (ECI) regulating the conduct of political parties and leaders, is activated upon the announcement of the election schedule.

Earlier, Home Minister Shah had reiterated the act’s objective, emphasising its humanitarian intent to grant citizenship solely to those subjected to persecution in the neighbouring nations.

“There is misinformation and incitement targeting our Muslim brothers regarding the CAA. The CAA is solely meant to grant citizenship to people, who sought refuge in India due to persecution in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh, and it does not aim to deprive anyone of their Indian citizenship,” Amit Shah had said.

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