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Citizenship Amendment Act Implemented: A Step Towards Granting Indian Citizenship

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Modi government has announced the implementation of the controversial Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 (CAA). | Source : PTI

The Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) has been a topic of significant debate and discussion since its passage four years ago. Finally, the Modi government has taken the crucial step of notifying the CAA, signaling a significant shift in Indian immigration policy. This move aims to grant Indian nationality to persecuted non-Muslim migrants from Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Afghanistan who arrived in India until December 31, 2014.

Background and Implementation

The long-awaited implementation of the CAA comes with the announcement of the Citizenship (Amendment) Rules, 2024 by the Ministry of Home Affairs. These rules provide the framework for eligible individuals under the CAA-2019 to apply for Indian citizenship through a dedicated online portal, streamlining the application process and ensuring accessibility for all.

Scope and Controversy

The scope of the CAA is to offer citizenship to undocumented non-Muslim migrants from neighboring countries, including Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, Buddhists, Parsis, and Christians. However, the legislation has not been without controversy. It has faced widespread criticism and sparked protests across the nation, with concerns raised regarding its compatibility with Article 14 of the Indian Constitution, which guarantees the right to equality.

Addressing Implementation Challenges

Despite receiving presidential assent in December 2019, the CAA’s enforcement was delayed due to the absence of necessary rules. The Ministry of Home Affairs has been obtaining extensions from parliamentary committees since 2020 to formulate these rules, as outlined in the Manual on Parliamentary Work. The introduction of a dedicated online portal for citizenship applications aims to simplify the process and eliminate barriers for applicants.


The implementation of the Citizenship Amendment Act signifies a significant milestone in the government’s efforts to address the plight of persecuted minorities in neighboring countries. While it aims to provide a pathway to Indian citizenship for eligible migrants, its enactment has been met with both support and criticism. As the CAA comes into effect, its impact on India’s social fabric and international relations remains a subject of debate and scrutiny.

Source: The Hindu

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