India’s Supreme Court begins hearing petitions against citizenship law amendments
The Supreme Court in India on Wednesday began hearing dozens of petitions seeking the revocation of amendments to the citizenship law.
The hearing follows nationwide protests and a security crackdown that led to more than 20 deaths, AP reports.
The government has argued the law would allow citizenship for people fleeing religious persecution in Muslim-majority Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan. However, the law the parliament approved in December sparked vehement opposition, with critics saying it is discriminatory because it excludes Muslims.
Most of the petitions argue that by excluding Muslims, the law undermines the first sentence of the preamble to the Indian Constitution, which defines the country as secular. Critics also say that the amendments violate Article 14, which guarantees equality before the law.