The last few weeks have seen major protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) across the country. Opinion is divided on the amendment. Whatever the case, the Supreme Court has accepted the pleas challenging the CAA and would pronounce the verdict over its constitutional validity in due course. The ruling dispensation believes that those who are protesting the amendment have fallen prey to a misinformation campaign. Though this is a matter of discussion, it also needs to be accepted here that fishing in troubled waters by political parties is not uncommon. It is important that the legislative process in our country be more transparent.
The Parliament should devote more time for discussion and subsequent passing of bills, particularly when the bill is to amend certain provisions of an existing Act. The standing committee should be utilised in finalising a draft Bill after thorough analysis. Reference of all Bills seeking amendment in various Acts to standing committee should be made part of standard procedure. The draft Bill along with recommendations of the committee should be put in the public domain to enable meaningful discussion and to educate all stakeholders about the nuances of the proposed Bill. The government then might bring in the Bills for final discussion and passage in Parliament. The government is free to accept or reject the feedback, but the process would ensure that the common man would come out educated and is less susceptible to influence.
Sanjeev Kumar Singh Jabalpur
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