Skip to main content
Sabrang
Sabrang
Communalism Freedom

USCIRF raises concerns about CAB, seeks sanctions against Amit Shah

Sabrangindia 10 Dec 2019

Amit Shah

After the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) was passed in the Lok Sabha after a marathon 12-hour debate on Monday night, the The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) has raised concerns about the future of secularism in India.

The USCIRF is an independent, bipartisan federal government entity established by the U.S. Congress to monitor, analyze and report on threats to religious freedom abroad. USCIRF makes foreign policy recommendations to the President, the Secretary of State and Congress intended to deter religious persecution and promote freedom of religion and belief. 

In a press release, USCIRF says, “The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) is deeply troubled by the passage of the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill (CAB), originally introduced by Home Minister Amit Shah, in the Lok Sabha (the lower house of the Indian Parliament) given the religion criterion in the bill.”

It elaborates, “The CAB is a dangerous turn in the wrong direction; it runs counter to India’s rich history of secular pluralism and the Indian Constitution, which guarantees equality before the law regardless of faith. In conjunction with the ongoing National Register of Citizens (NRC) process in Assam and nationwide NRC that the Home Minister seeks to propose, USCIRF fears that the Indian government is creating a religious test for Indian citizenship that would strip citizenship from millions of Muslims.”

Fearing that the bill will also clear the upper house of the parliament, it says, “If the CAB passes in both houses of parliament, the United States government should consider sanctions against the Home Minister and other principal leadership.”

This is not the first time, the USCIRF has raised concerns about religious freedom under the present regime. In its 2019 report, it had said, “Various nationalist groups in India have expanded the ideology of Hindutva, or “Hinduness,” which has three pillars—common nation, race, and culture—and forms the basis of an oftentimes exclusionary national narrative with a singular focus on the rights of Hindus.” It added, “The influence of Hindutva groups goes beyond politics and government. For example, Hindutva groups have expanded the scope and size of religious schools—which often teach intolerant religious ideology in nongovernmental private educational systems—to nearly four million students, and have tried to distribute books promoting religious intolerance in public schools.” 
 

Related:

Citizenship Amendment Bill passes, but what does this mean?
A Legislative Bill for Faith-based Citizenship: How India Has Reached This Point of Disaster?
BJP has been laying the base for a new CAB (Citizenship Bill) since 2015
Anti-CAB protests intensify in Assam

USCIRF raises concerns about CAB, seeks sanctions against Amit Shah

Amit Shah

After the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) was passed in the Lok Sabha after a marathon 12-hour debate on Monday night, the The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) has raised concerns about the future of secularism in India.

The USCIRF is an independent, bipartisan federal government entity established by the U.S. Congress to monitor, analyze and report on threats to religious freedom abroad. USCIRF makes foreign policy recommendations to the President, the Secretary of State and Congress intended to deter religious persecution and promote freedom of religion and belief. 

In a press release, USCIRF says, “The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) is deeply troubled by the passage of the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill (CAB), originally introduced by Home Minister Amit Shah, in the Lok Sabha (the lower house of the Indian Parliament) given the religion criterion in the bill.”

It elaborates, “The CAB is a dangerous turn in the wrong direction; it runs counter to India’s rich history of secular pluralism and the Indian Constitution, which guarantees equality before the law regardless of faith. In conjunction with the ongoing National Register of Citizens (NRC) process in Assam and nationwide NRC that the Home Minister seeks to propose, USCIRF fears that the Indian government is creating a religious test for Indian citizenship that would strip citizenship from millions of Muslims.”

Fearing that the bill will also clear the upper house of the parliament, it says, “If the CAB passes in both houses of parliament, the United States government should consider sanctions against the Home Minister and other principal leadership.”

This is not the first time, the USCIRF has raised concerns about religious freedom under the present regime. In its 2019 report, it had said, “Various nationalist groups in India have expanded the ideology of Hindutva, or “Hinduness,” which has three pillars—common nation, race, and culture—and forms the basis of an oftentimes exclusionary national narrative with a singular focus on the rights of Hindus.” It added, “The influence of Hindutva groups goes beyond politics and government. For example, Hindutva groups have expanded the scope and size of religious schools—which often teach intolerant religious ideology in nongovernmental private educational systems—to nearly four million students, and have tried to distribute books promoting religious intolerance in public schools.” 
 

Related:

Citizenship Amendment Bill passes, but what does this mean?
A Legislative Bill for Faith-based Citizenship: How India Has Reached This Point of Disaster?
BJP has been laying the base for a new CAB (Citizenship Bill) since 2015
Anti-CAB protests intensify in Assam

Related Articles

Monday

13

Jan

Nationwide

Saturday

04

Jan

Karve Statue, Kothrud, Pune

Theme

Ambedkar

On India's 70th Constitution Day, the Subversive Sangh

Repeated attempts by the RSS-driven Sangh Parivar to appropriate Dr BR Ambedkar throw up contradictions and evasions
JNU

‘Stand by JNU!’ Solidarity Statements from across the world

A campaign launched by the university’s students and teachers challenging the intolerance of dissent
Hindutva

Hindutva and Democracy

Communalism Combat 9th Anniversary Special
HCU

#Stand with HCU

Solidarity Statements and Video Testimonies

Campaigns

Monday

13

Jan

Nationwide

Saturday

04

Jan

Karve Statue, Kothrud, Pune

Videos

Freedom

Chitmahal: Citizens without a country

The Chitmahals are land pieces of one country inside other's territory. The residents of these enclaves, pieces of land along the India-Bangladesh border, lead a traumatic life in India as their appeal for recognition, rehabilitation and basic human rights aren't paid any attention to. Watch this video to know more about them.

Freedom

Chitmahal: Citizens without a country

The Chitmahals are land pieces of one country inside other's territory. The residents of these enclaves, pieces of land along the India-Bangladesh border, lead a traumatic life in India as their appeal for recognition, rehabilitation and basic human rights aren't paid any attention to. Watch this video to know more about them.

Analysis

Ambedkar

On India's 70th Constitution Day, the Subversive Sangh

Repeated attempts by the RSS-driven Sangh Parivar to appropriate Dr BR Ambedkar throw up contradictions and evasions
JNU

‘Stand by JNU!’ Solidarity Statements from across the world

A campaign launched by the university’s students and teachers challenging the intolerance of dissent
Hindutva

Hindutva and Democracy

Communalism Combat 9th Anniversary Special
HCU

#Stand with HCU

Solidarity Statements and Video Testimonies

Archives