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Magsaysay award winners to Modi: CAA, NRC 'discriminatotory', violates Constitution

By Our Representative
Indian recipients of the prestigious Magsaysay Award, Aruna Roy, Admiral (retired) Laxminarayan Ramdas, Bezwada Wilson, Rajendra Singh, P Sainath, Shantha Sinha, TM Krishna, Deep Joshi and Sandeep Pandey, have expressed their "deep sense of concern and anguish" over the passing of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the Government of India's decision to link it with the National Register of Citizens (NRC).
Calling these "discriminatory and violative of all the guarantees of right to equality before law assured to all persons in the Indian Constitution, in a statement they have saed, "In its present form and intent, CAA, together with the proposed NRC all over India, appears to single out one community – namely the Muslims."
Asserting that the Act "links religion with the question of citizenship for the first time in our plural, secular democracy, and is clearly divisive and therefore unacceptable", the top Magsaysay awardees say, if earlier CAA and NRC had fanned the fires of insecurities in Assam, the North East", it has now engulfed "entire India."
They add, "We do not understand the need for introducing either CAA or NRC at this point in time, when there are several other urgent issues on hand."
Pointing out that "there is indefinite curfew and also shutting down of internet services in many states of the North East and elsewhere", the statement notes, "Students in their thousands are out on the streets – from all accounts with no political party affiliations or pressure."
Urging the Prime Minister and the Home Minister to "review the situation in all seriousness and protect the interests of peace, harmony and the well being of the people of India as well as those desiring to live in this country without any discrimination", they ask them honour "the tradition of India", upheld by "Swami Vivekanand in his famous speech at Chicago."

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