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CAA: Home Ministry hands over first citizenship certificates to 14 individuals

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on Wednesday issued the first set of citizenship certificates to at least 14 applicants under the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA).

“The certificates were handed over by Union Home Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla in the national capital,” the MHA said in a press note. Notably, the Centre notified the CAA rules for implementation on March 11, 2024, as the law remained in the ‘dormant’ state for a couple of years.

The applications for citizenship under the CAA were moved from persons belonging to Hindu, Sikh, Jain, Buddhist, Parsi and Christian communities from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan, who entered India till December 31, 2014, on account of religious persecution.

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The Empowered Committee headed by Director (Census Operation) after due scrutiny of papers granted citizenship to 14 applicants. The CAA, seeking to give Indian citizenship to persecuted minorities from neighbouring nations including Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh was passed by the Parliament in 2019.

The law, however, after enactment by the Parliament, got embroiled in controversy as demonstrations and protests mushroomed across the country. First, the violent protests and then the outbreak of the Covid pandemic apparently led to long delays in the notification of CAA.

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