Lok Sabha voted in favour of introduction of the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill 2019 after Speaker Om Birla allowed division of votes over its tabling on Monday. MPs voted in favour of introduction of the bill with 293 'Ayes' and 82 'Noes'.
The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill 2019 seeks to grant Indian citizenship to non-Muslim refugees from Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan. Through this bill, Indian citizenship will be provided to the members of Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi and Christian communities, who have come from the three countries to India till December 31, 2014, to put an end to them being treated as illegal immigrants in the country.
Earlier, Union Home Minister Amit Shah refuted the claims that the bill was anti-Muslim saying in Lok Sabha that the name of the Muslim community is nowhere mentioned in the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019.
"Muslim community is not named even once in the bill. You cannot distort and present it in the House," said Shah after tabling the Bill. He was replying to a member from Opposition Bench who alleged that the Bill is discriminatory against the community.
The Bill was passed by the Lower House of the Parliament earlier this year but lapsed with the term of the previous Lok Sabha during the first term of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi government in the Centre.