The Supreme Court Issues Notice to Government on Citizenship Amendment Act


The Supreme Court Bench Comprising of Chief Justice Chief Justice DY Chandrachud, Justices JB Pardiwala and Manoj Misra has agreed to hear the batch of petition seeking to halt the implementation of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and its associated rules. The Supreme Court issued Notice to Central Government and set April 9 as the next hearing date.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta requested an adjournment, citing the need to respond to numerous petitions and applications. He indicated that the Centre would require approximately four weeks to prepare a comprehensive reply. However, Senior Advocate Kapil Sibal contested this timeline, asserting it was excessive.

Representing the Indian Union Muslim League, Sibal argued against the urgency, suggesting that the citizenship process could wait until the court’s decision. Advocate Nizam Pasha echoed similar sentiments, expressing concerns over potential prejudice, particularly for individuals excluded from the National Register of Citizens (NRC).

In response to Solicitor General Mehta’s assertion that no citizenship would be granted during this period, Senior Advocate Indira Jaising urged for an assurance to this effect. However, Mehta declined to make such a commitment.

The bench eventually granted three weeks for the Centre to file a response solely addressing interim applications. Jaising emphasized the importance of ensuring that any citizenship granted during this time be subject to the court’s final ruling.

The discussion also touched upon concerns raised by Assam tribal organizations regarding the CAA’s impact on the North East, particularly the exclusion of certain areas. Senior Advocate Vijay Hansaria highlighted the provision of the Act that excludes the entire North East region, suggesting that if their argument prevails, these areas could be included.

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-Ashish Kumar Sinha -Editor Legally Speaking -Ram Nath Goenka awardee - 14 Years of Experience in Media - Covering Courts Since 2008