GUWAHATI, June 3 - With the entire country fighting against the COVID-19 pandemic, the controversial Citizenship (Amendment) Act, through which the Government wanted to provide citizenship to the minority communities of Pakistan , Bangladesh and Afghanistan has been relegated to the background.
Official sources told The Assam Tribune that the Government of India is yet to frame the rules for implementing the CAA and the process is delayed as the focus is on fighting the pandemic.
Sources said that in the month of January, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) started the process of consultations with concerned groups to frame the rules despite widespread protests in Assam and some other parts of the country against the CAA. In the first phase of consultations, representatives of groups of people, who would be benefitted by the CAA, were called to New Delhi for discussions. The Centre will also have to take the views of the State Governments into consideration before framing the rules for implementing the CAA on the ground.
Sources revealed that the process of consultations slowed down after the protests in Shaheen Bagh area in Delhi turned violent and some other parts of Delhi also witnessed incidents of violence. The Centre would have to take into consideration the views of the stakeholders and the opinion of the State Governments would also have to be taken before framing the rules. It is not possible to implement any Act without framing the rules for it.
Sources said that after the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic, the entire focus of the Central Government was shifted to fighting the pandemic and the Ministry of Home Affairs is also busy on that. The Government�s priority is fighting the disease and bringing the economy back on the rails. Under the circumstances, the CAA has been relegated to the background.
Meanwhile, the All Assam Students� Union (AASU) has asserted that its stand on the CAA remains the same and it would not accept the Act. AASU chief adviser Samujjal Bhattacharya said that the students� body is not agitating now because of the COVID-19 pandemic. �But our stand remains the same. We will never accept the Act which violates the Assam Accord and provides citizenship to foreigners,� he added. He also said that the North East region would not be allowed to be used as a dumping ground of foreign nationals.