United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet has approached the Indian Supreme Court to challenge the Citizenship Amendment Act or more commonly called the CAA, reported The Hindu.
The publication reported that India’s mission in Geneva was informed on Monday evening by Bachelet’s office that it had filed an “intervention application in respect to the 2019 Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA)”.
According to NDTV, it is the first time that such a petition has been filed and the UN high commissioner has asked the Indian Supreme Court to make it a party in the case against the CAA that is currently ongoing in the Indian apex court.
India’s External Affairs Ministry has condemned the move and argued that no foreign party has any locus standi on issues of India’s sovereignty and called it an internal matter.
India has seen weeks of demonstrations and violence since the new citizenship law came into force in December with critics saying that it discriminates against Muslims.
The controversial citizenship bill gives amnesty to undocumented migrants belonging to the non-Muslim faiths from Bangladesh, Afghanistan and Pakistan.
It is not the first time that the UN has urged India to take back the law. Last week the United Nations expressed concern over the recent deadly anti-Muslim clashes in New Delhi in which at least 43 have been killed and a mosque vandalised.
“We are following the situation closely,” UN Secretary-General’s Spokesman Stephane Dujarric had said in response to a question at the regular noon briefing at UN Headquarters in New York.
He underscored the need for Indian security forces to show restraint and to allow the protestors to demonstrate peacefully.
“This is the secretary-general’s constant position,” the spokesman added.—AFP