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Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019:

GS Paper 2:

Topics Covered: Parliament and State Legislatures – structure, functioning, conduct of business, powers & privileges and issues arising out of these.


Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019:


Two years after the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 (CAA) was passed by Parliament, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) is yet to notify the rules governing the Act. The legislation cannot be implemented without the rules being notified.



The Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 (CAA) was notified on December 12, 2019 and came into force from January 10, 2020.

It seeks to amend the Citizenship Act, 1955.

  • The Citizenship Act,1955 provides various ways in which citizenship may be acquired.
  • It provides for citizenship by birth, descent, registration, naturalisation and by incorporation of the territory into India.


About CAA:

  • The objective of the CAA is to grant Indian citizenship to persecuted minorities — Hindu, Sikh, Jain, Buddhist, Parsi and Christian — from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan.
  • Those from these communities who had come to India till December 31, 2014, facing religious persecution in their respective countries, will not be treated as illegal immigrants but given Indian citizenship.
  • The Act provides that the central government may cancel the registration of OCIs on certain grounds.



  • The Act does not apply to tribal areas of Tripura, Mizoram, Assam and Meghalaya because of being included in the 6th Schedule of the Constitution.
  • Also areas that fall under the Inner Limit notified under the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation, 1873, will also be outside the Act’s purview.


Issues surrounding the law:

  • It violates the basic tenets of the Constitution. Illegal immigrants are distinguished on the basis of religion.
  • It is perceived to be a demographic threat to indigenous communities.
  • It makes illegal migrants eligible for citizenship on the basis of religion. This may violate Article 14 of the Constitution which guarantees the right to equality.
  • It attempts to naturalise the citizenship of illegal immigrants in the region.
  • It allows cancellation of OCI registration for violation of any law. This is a wide ground that may cover a range of violations, including minor offences.


Opposition to the law:

  • The constitutional and legal validity of the CAA has been challenged in the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India’. The Governments of Rajathan and Kerala have filed petitions under Article 131 (the Supreme Court shall, to the exclusion of any other court, have original jurisdiction in any dispute between the Government of India and one or more States).
  • The Central Government has received resolutions adopted by the Assemblies of Meghalaya, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Punjab against the Act.


Insta Curious:

How NRC is different from CAA? Are there any similarities between the two? Reference:



Prelims Link:

  1. About CAA.
  2. Features.
  3. Religions covered.
  4. Countries Covered.
  5. Exceptions.

Mains Link:

Discuss the issues surrounding the implementation of CAA.

Sources: the Hindu.