Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray on Tuesday said that his party will oppose the Citizenship Amendment Bill, 2019 in the Rajya Sabha. The development comes hours after Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said those supporting the Bill are attempting to destroy the foundation of our nation. The Bill, which seeks to grant citizenship to non-Muslim immigrants from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan if they faced religious persecution there, was passed in the Lok Sabha with 311-80 votes on Monday night, after more than seven hours of debate and discussions.
"We will not give support to the Bill (Citizenship Amendment Bill) unless things are clear. If any citizen is afraid of this Bill than one must clear their doubts. They are our citizens so one must answer their questions too," news agency ANI quoted Thackeray as saying.
The Sena had last month parted ways with its ally BJP to form a coalition government in Maharashtra, which is headed by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray.
Thackeray's comments came after Rahul Gandhi on Twitter wrote, "The CAB is an attack on the Indian constitution. Anyone who supports it is attacking and attempting to destroy the foundation of our nation."
Earlier, Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra said, "India's tryst with bigotry and narrow minded exclusion" was confirmed as the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill was passed in the Lok Sabha at midnight yesterday.
The government is likely to introduce the Citizenship Amendment Bill, 2019 in the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday. Unlike the 2016 scenario, the ruling government is confident of smooth passage of the Bill in the Upper House. According to official sources, the effective strength of the Rajya Sabha is 238. The NDA's current strength is 105 in the House, including 83 members of the BJP, six of Janata Dal (U), three of Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), one each from LJP and RPI(A) and 11 nominated MPs.