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SC to hear on March 19 pleas seeking stay on Citizenship Amendment Rules

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SC to hear on March 19 pleas seeking stay on Citizenship Amendment Rules

New Delhi, March 15 (IANS) The Supreme Court on Friday agreed to hear on March 19 the pleas seeking stay on the implementation of the rules notified by the Union Home Ministry under the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA).

A bench headed by CJI D.Y. Chandrachud was urged by senior advocate Kapil Sibal to urgently hear the interlocutory application filed by Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) challenging the introduction of Citizenship Amendment Rules, 2024.

“Now the government has notified the rules ahead of the Lok Sabha elections. If citizenship is granted, it will be impossible to reverse,” said Sibal, mentioning the application for urgent listing.

Sibal recalled that the top court in 2019 did not pass any stay order on implementation of the CAA because of non-existence of the rules.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, the second highest law officer of the Centre, submitted that he is not objecting to the urgent listing of the case but questioned the locus standi of the petitioners challenging the grant of citizenship.

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Without expressing any opinion on merits, CJI Chandrachud-led Bench proceeded to list the matter on March 19.

The application filed by IUML stated that the Citizenship Amendment Rules, 2024 are manifestly arbitrary and created an unfair advantage in favour of a class of persons on the ground solely of their religious identity, which is impermissible under Articles 14 and 15 of the Constitution.

It added that around 250 petitions challenging the provisions of the CAA are pending before the Supreme Court and in case CAA is held to be unconstitutional, an “anomalous situation” would arise when people who would have got citizenship under the impugned Act and Rules would have to be stripped of their citizenship.

“Therefore, it is in the best interest of every person to defer the implementation of CAA and impugned rules till this Hon’ble Court finally decides the matter…The Petitioner had pressed for a stay of the implementation of the provisions of the impugned act. However, the Union of India had told this Hon’ble Court that the rules have not been framed and therefore the implementation will not take place. The Writ Petition has been pending for the last 4.5 years,” the application said.

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The Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), 2019 grants citizenship to non-Muslim migrants who had come from Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan on or before December 31, 2014.

–IANS

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