Former Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh, Deb Mukherjee, along with two IAS officers, on Friday moved the Supreme Court, challenging the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019, which provides for citizenship to non-Muslim refugees from Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghstan.
In his petition, Mukherjee said that the Act distinguishes refugees on the basis of their religion and nationality in granting Indian citizenship.
"The Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019, purportedly seeks to provide benefits to victims of persecution. However, the impugned Act goes on to create a division between the persecuted, on the basis of faith and nationality of origin," read the plea that also has former IAS officers Som Sundar Barua and Amitava Pandey as signatories.
Asserting that the Act violates "every known principle of equality", the petition said that distinguishing refugees based on religion "constitutes invidious discrimination and indefensible denial of equal respect and concern".
The petition said that provisions of the Act "damages and destroys the Indian Constitution's basic feature of secularism, and ought to be struck down as unconstitutional".
The Citizenship (Amendment) Act provides citizenship to the persecuted non-Muslim communities of the three countries who arrived in India before December 31, 2014.
The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill was passed by Parliament on Wednesday and came into effect with President Ram Nath Kovind giving his assent on Thursday night.
( With inputs from ANI )