NEW DELHI, July 28 - Faced with a daunting task, the Joint Parliamentary Party (JPC) on the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 has decided to seek time till first day of the last week of the Winter Session to submit its report to Parliament.
Finalisation of the National Register of Citizen (NRC) in Assam is also in the process, and it will have a bearing on the examination of the Bill, JPC chairman Rajendra Agrawal has written to the members of the committee.
The resolution seeking extension of time for presentation of the report was scheduled to be moved in the Lok Sabha on Friday, but as a holiday was declared at the last hour, the resolution is now likely to be moved on Monday (July 30), a member of the committee told this newspaper.
The seven-point memorandum, a copy of which is with this newspaper, explains in detail the activities of the JPC. It is mentioned in the memorandum that as the matters pertaining to the Citizenship Act, 1955 are subjudice in the Supreme Court, the Ministry of Home Affairs has been asked to appraise the JPC on the development in the apex court regularly.
In view of the larger interests involved in the proposed amendment to the Bill and to make them acceptable to broader section of the society in the State, which are having sizeable migrant population and problem relating thereto, the JPC intends to invite some more organisations, NGOs and individuals concerned to obtain their view, Agrawal has said.
However, if the JPC report is presented in the last week of the Winter Session, then the Modi government will have little time to bring in a Bill due to the Lok Sabha polls in May. The government will call the last session of the current Parliament in the last week of February, and may opt for a vote-on-account instead of going for a full Budget Session, which is at least a three-month-long exercise.
Agrawal mentioned that under his chairmanship the JPC held two sittings with the officials of the MHA, Ministry of Law and Justice to discuss further course of action on expediting examination of the Bill and to take evidence of 30 organisations and individuals mainly from Assam to hear the views of the various provisions of the Bill.