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tv   Inside Story 2019 Ep 343  Al Jazeera  December 10, 2019 10:32am-11:01am +03

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of several people in a volcanic eruption in that country at least 5 people were killed and 8 others remain missing they're now presumed dead after that eruption on white island police have suggested it's unlikely they'll find any more survivors another 31 people were injured a number of those suffered severe burns in india a controversial citizenship bill has passed its 1st stage and parliament the proposed law will now head to india's upper house it's geared towards granting citizenship to those of fleeing religious persecution but it excludes muslims some say it's the governing hindu nationalist parties latest attempt at sidelining muslims in india well those are the headlines do join me for more news here on al-jazeera after inside story to stay with us. with north korea. carrying. these mysterious ships on how
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does either. what does it take to become an indian citizen the government says a proposed new law offers a home for those fleeing religious persecution but opponents say it excludes one group of muslims and undermines the country's secular identity what will it mean for the constitution and india's future this is inside story. hello and welcome see the program i'm home he'd seen a proposal that would bring sweeping changes to india's 64 year old citizenship law is dividing politicians and activists and sponsoring charges of religious bigotry
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the ruling bharatiya janata party or b j p says it offers a safe harbor to people around the region fleeing persecution but opponents say the bill is anti muslim now it would allow illegal migrants from pakistan bangladesh and afghanistan to obtain indian nationality if they are members of religious minorities in the countries they flee that includes hindus buddhists jains christians sikhs and parsis but not muslims it follows earlier moves by in a range of movies government to strip millions of muslims in the state of us some of their indian nationality where critics say both measures undermine the secular principles of india's constitution the new citizenship law so needs to be approved by the upper house of india's parliaments but we begin with this reports from vora in new delhi. projects that mean organize in several parts of the northeast of
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india and also in the national capital these people of new jersey are getting in the militia citizenship amendment bill and. they call it discriminatory they did government says it's only trying to protect religiously persecuted minorities who have come to india frequently like up honest on boxed on and bangladesh the political analyst question about madonna's intentions they are asking and that indeed is the government's intention then why not also by the green jersey but again analysts say that the indian government from now on is going to be deciding who is and is not an indian on the basis of religion and that goes against the burning idea of india a secular india and some of the b. whether its will be deal more she say that's the indian institution starts with we the people not to be the indians not to the muslims to the assyrians anonymously community that they are now going to be dogmatic that they would have been but many are not including the impact on indian citizens x. would say that this may take india even closer to being a hindu nation and further away from
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a secular state. well let's bring in our guests from new delhi by skype or joins boy harsh mander director of the social justice advocacy organization center for equity studies in london ronan lee a visiting scholar at queen mary university of london and from sunny parts in india also by skype straighter and charlie a professor and dean at the gentle school of international affairs gentlemen welcome see you all if i could start with you harsh mander what do you think about this bill which has now passed the lower house of parliament in india do you feel it's controversial. it's not just controversial it's probably the most single most dangerous dog for the survival of india as a secular democracy if it gets passed by parliament. and i need to explain that it
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is that he is it's about belonging and it's about who would have the right to have rights because that is what that's what citizenship is ultimately about and trying to in guess freedom struggle. gunned he led his struggle which was phoned in home on the visit idea that india would belong to all those who would or would want to believe that this is a country and religion would be irrelevant to decide whether you indigenous with citizenship or not. this is the game much harder because the muslim league. demanded in find the. doubt the nation be on religion which was but is done. and and in view was that this is not one but 2 missions there's a muslim pakistan and a hindu india and and therefore there was a good vision a 1000000 people are dating in the us don't read my whole family was. was one of
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the many were to cross the borders. but mama got here and that and the leadership of this country that is all that even them whatever may have happened india will remain a country the jihad really belongs to all its villages one who was a people of different religious identities and it'll be a citizens in the b.b. and we must remember that muslims who have stayed on in india had a choice between that it is but a son in secular india and the jews thinking that india and and 2 did what the median is doing is in a sense proving that. you know that they don't want the legion i was getting if they believe that india is fundamentally mission or. it's delivering. from this bill does this bill strip nationality from indians who are muslim already or is this citizenship amendment bill does it
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doesn't it just apply to those who are seeking to apply for citizenship in india. i know what city this is gone by when something called the national registry of citizens which we've seen and slid in in a sense what's extraordinary about that process is that the speed as you move is that you are not a citizen and it is up to you to prove the documents that you are a citizen another in a country that is that you do little bit illiterate people you know people who are going to school be don't have a boat certification. to sis's people don't even move their dates of birth you have to produce documents and sure right from your ancestors that your ancestors were citizens of this country and you would link to them and this is goes in whole as suffering and you know it's almost got to here's what people have a good tool in in a sense ok so what what we're basically seeing is that if then they'll be
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a national they still citizens across india. people of any other it is that identity even if they are undocumented have nothing to worry and this is typically because it will be presumed that you are if you'd used and prosecuted and therefore you get citizenship it is blue muslims who if they're not able to produce these documents it is quite likely will then be. you know the citizenship rights ok let me put those points to you charlie we've heard there that this at this citizenship amendment is dangerous and harsh mander. words and he's also bringing in that the controversy which is surprising and saying this that this registry at the same time what's what's your assessment of this bill that has been introduced and how do you respond to those allegations that it's dangerous . well it's completely unfounded it's beard on an ideological turn of our prime
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minister mr modi and his nationalistic vision for the country and the project india as. a savior of minorities across south asia what this bill purports to do is to try and correct a historical injustice that's been done to a lot of minority groups in these neighboring countries like pakistan bangladesh and afghanistan just look at the statistics in those were 23 percent of pakistan after independence in $147.00 now they're less than 2 percent of the population lot of them have been facing you know forcible conversions assassinations and ethnic cleansing and they're looking for india to give them or if you are going to shelter sikhs in pakistan they used to be 40000 of them in 2002 down to just 8000 today in those in bangladesh another country to our east and on 14 percent of the time of
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independence in $171.00 now down to 9 percent and willing in those and sikhs in afghanistan the 3rd neighbor which is the purpose of this bill 700000 in the 1970 s. now hindus and sikhs are less than $7000.00 so if you look at the situation there are a lot of jihadists of extremist groups you know one neighborhood that are engaging in ethnic cleansing and genocide of campaigns against my not and all these countries a theocratic islam is a straight religion and there is no basis of persecution of muslims in the country on the basis of religion a lot or sit you know there may be other and india does host muslim refugees for the fact you know this is often ignored by the critics like mr munder there are more than 40000 ruhi indian muslim refugees what currently in india who fled ethnic cleansing in myanmar we are nearly 20000 afghan muslim refugees were been here doing since the war us started in the ninety's ok and we continue to show you them liberal in order for you would. so india i think what we are trying to do through
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the citizenship amendment bill used to you know provide like a white house out of beacon of hope for those who are in very very dire circumstances a lot of us countries if i were the region is not prosecuting minorities then there are fundamentalists you have these groups that are doing it well and i don't know they are it's interesting that you bring up the points about the ranchers because the rain just would not be able to apply for citizenship under this bill no they don't get citizenship but they're not being deported either there are more than 1000 i am but why would they not get success and ship if this is about. the same to be at cross purposes here either it's providing safe haven to persecuted people or it's a christian correcting a historical injustice and it's not giving them citizenship because this is a fresh exodus that has happened only in the last 10 years there's a hope for them to return but event it comes to the afghans they have been living in india for a long time they're muslims they're well integrated there's not a sure talk so and for that matter i want to clarify one point the population of
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muslims as a whole in india is $200000000.00 it draws from 90 percent to 49 percent of the time when you're going to support the muslim to date that driving unlike in the neighboring countries where non muslims are under serious threat of extinction muslims in india are thriving 90 percent of indian muslims lorded for mr moore these party in the general elections that just happened a few months ago so i think a lot of this problem ghana needs to be an act and needs to be countered because this is not based on statistical and objective reality on the grassroots where muslims are thriving and doing well in this country because india is the only place where the entire south asia people who are facing persecution and fear and other kinds of discrimination how hawke ok let me put those points to ruin and leave then everyone would you respond to this you do you view this this bill as controversial or do you see this as correcting a historical injustice as we heard from measure until you. well it's obviously
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controversial i mean what what's been proposed is a change to legislation that will provide a citizenship so long as you're not muslim and that's what's going to make it controversial it's a step away from india's founding secular principles and it's deeply concerning because of how specific it is it doesn't include. it doesn't include migrants from me and mum india shares a 1600 kilometer long land border with me and mum. those been some talk already about genocide in the region in fact tomorrow me and mars leader aung san suu chain will front the international court of justice to defend me and maher against accusations of genocide against the wrecking a muslim minority but the rethink of muslim minority who are persecuted in me and i would find absolutely no solace in india because of this legislation and in fact
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india's government has made efforts to deport those wrecking who are living in india i think that the legislation is concerning too because of the way it will affect muslims feeling about how they should engage and tanny gauge with the politics of india it sends a strong signal that muslims in the future might well find their rights further restricted and the next step will surely be a nationwide register of citizens very similar to what happened in assam and the victim groups there were of course the muslim or the the muslims ok syria i'm sure you don't appear to agree with that and i just wondered a couple of things there are more than 20000000 illegal by militia immigrants who have seeped through the borders are on the east of the country and our amalgamated into real use. states of eastern india and it's
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a very controversial aspect locals feel outnumbered but it's being encouraged by some of the left leaning parties in that region because they think that the by naturalizing these illegal aliens they can try and you know get their banks to do in the name of minority protection i think this is a big security challenge the national security angle also needs to be understood you see there are groups like harkat ul jihad islamic would be just dreaded you know internationally proscribed terrorist organizations they recruit from some of these illegal migrants so we have a right if the sovereign state has a right to distinguish between legitimate refugees who are facing fear of persecution we simply don't get we seem to be mixing a lot of things up together mixing up muslims with terrorism with a legitimate and illegitimate refugee it can't be all things to it's all men here either states accept that minorities are persecuted accept all minorities
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or 8 it's difficult to just cherry pick these missile and refugees aren't welcome but they were christian refugees are and is that's not where the problem lies straight are actually a. lot of muslims do not face persecution in any of these neighboring countries by virtue of their religion where they fail a persecution any m.r. so it's an object to fact based on group identity which raises sports occlusion from state or from radical jihadist groups in those countries are only now not trying to come in. i mean muslims most certainly face persecution in myanmar a major neighbor of india 1600 kilometer long land border with india and tomorrow and most later will be at the international court of justice because of that persecution i think we're getting away from what's actually happening here which is that this is a piece of legislation that on the one hand claims or is claimed to provide
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solace and protection for people who are persecuted but on the other hand it simply doesn't do that and that's what i think worries so many people about this legislation what the what its proponents say it does is not what the legislation in fact dots ok let me bring in harsh mander here because you also say it wanted to jump in on that point. do you think there's a veil is ford's because it's looking at things in a religious context or are there are other deeper problems with it. in that you know 1st the there's some. you know move for schools in in mr sharon's games. the indian government has being singing back to you in the us. and some of us have been part of petitions in the supreme court trying to say that that you cannot same people back. because they
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is indian if they did situations it's not true that these $40000.00. continually be supported in any as if you d's in this country that's absolutely false secondly this would discourse of 20000000 you know the different figures under the she's the you know small this country is and that under the muslim is equal to get it this is equal to a security trait these these are all in danger this. kinds of or all of of or all of and occasions to meet a woman is does actually use the word oh my god and incidentally frightening would because it gives us he talks about infiltrators as though money will have to be crushed and that brings back you know defying memories or for a wonderful instance when when you use that kind of discourse you know the whole
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process it was completely meted against. the minorities in assam how many people finally emerged even you know in the process was was. you know a small spending mistake was enough with the dictation and you haven't had a big meeting that is into the new lingo to me today needing to english and then this scenes in spinning into documents and it and you're treated as a foreigner in your sent to a detention center out of after after that in diop process you had just 9 what less than 2000000 people who are. unable to prove their documents and often loony 400000 or so muslim so. this will discourse abode you know hordes of muslim immigrants slugging into india and being recruited by did as donations is part of that he been injured as
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a dent to divide india only just goals india has seen but isn't it seems you're. seeing what it leads to a committee with this kind of politics and the politics of the ruling party is an extremely dangerous one because india's problems economies known a bad shape there is as there was unemployment ok farmers and this is just it is not that muslims are getting in trouble from different countries and. the jobs and creating security sit well let me put that to you straight am charlie at that was the motivation behind the spell what is the government hoping to achieve by introducing this bill isn't going to address the fundamental underlying problems in the country what's the motivation behind excluding muslims as a group from this citizenship legislation well 1st of all how as i said
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it is to expand our soft on in the region as a refuge for those who are desperately needing you know protection but only desperately need protection that can be secondly the motivation i said is national security and a number of these i don't again harsh mander is exaggerating i didn't say that on the $20000000.00 out into terrorism i did not it would all be bangladeshi it immigrants are terrorists i said that some of them have joined radical jihadist groups it's a fact that must be acknowledged i mean why should we hide behind political correctness when it comes to national security and thirdly i think india is actually proclaiming that it is an open space i mean look at the number of refugee communities we horse because combatants we have 3 lung cancer we have or he just. we have i'm dance we have some. from from the met it's mic majority of myanmar who was accused of doing the democracy struggle and so many others you know and you look at the. sense of hope that they have been to reach india and the remaining
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india india is in me is the safe harbor you know and that is the message i think enhances your strength as our regional power it gives us you know people across these countries were looking at bleak features to their very existence why is harsh mander not talking about the minorities in pakistan bangladesh and afghanistan are being are facing genocide the situation that i'm focusing on but when i hear that you should come under the indian government's jurisdiction let me tell you where in the dying minutes of this debate as well it is our at sponsibility in this region to maintain the safety and security of people who not we want peace and a brotherhood in this neighborhood and that's not happening because this consistent genocide mindset an ethnic cleansing happening of minorities in this country let me let so you and only the road in the we're hearing from mr charlie that the motivation behind this bill is increasing soft power part of it is to increase soft power and to protect minorities would you agree that that's likely to happen that's
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not what. it was that's not what the bill will do i mean i think the motivation for the bill is is more likely to be political i mean this will play well with king to nationalist voters i mean that there's no question about that they they will feel that this is legislation that speaks to them and that's a handy distraction from the state of india's economy and that works for the ruling big j.p. it worked for a renter modi during the last the last national election he he portrayed himself as a watchman as someone who could be trusted on national security and that minimized the focus on the economy and i think what's at the core of this is domestic politics within india and it's an opportunity to distract from the state of the economy ok we only have a minute left so if you could answer in one sentence please harsh mander what do you think if this bill passes what do you think this the the consequences of it be
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for india's secular nature india's signal getting to be completely broken because 200000000 people will know that you. have to. get going to consider it had a little bit have to prove that the indian citizens and this of documents that they will find it very hard to produce and i know this much been it a muslim people across india that day. i would hold this people this in we don't have any documents or what would happen to us if it is getting a sense or you know it's not just 2nd class citizenship but being stripped of the digital citizenship and being locked up in detention centers which are being set up or does the ok dana thanks chris ok shit i'm truly quickly a few words what do you think this will say it for the secular nature of the country and its constitution. there are lights light and then there are statistics
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i've given you the facts they are actually unchallengeable and the facts on the ground remain that india is the only democracy in the only secular country in this region that is able to absorb these people with and give them a life of dignity this is a major step forward for india's foreign policy and soft power in the region and i believe that india's constitutional democracy say fundamental more in fact muslims are actually hand you know moving in step with the current ruling party's agenda and most of them appreciated the women muslim women were liberated to triple to lock build recently their watered for mr moore the and i think he is feeling their hopes and aspirations with greater vision ok and a final sentence roland roland they where to go from here i know where god i don't think this will be positive for india as a whole and it certainly won't be positive for india's muslim minority ok and i'm
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afraid gentlemen we are out of time this discussion will of course continue in the days and weeks to come but for now i would like to that oh my guess harsh mander warningly and sriram acho they are thank you to you for watching at home you can see the program again any time by visiting the website al jazeera dot com and to continue the discussion head to social media our facebook page is face meant to come forward slash a.j. inside story or join the conversation on twitter our handle is at inside story but take me to regulate at our market in the night for me and the whole team here in doha if i can i. going green bacteria in a bored tree and super heated gas escaping from the cannick well in iceland this is really the heart of innovation in the for what happened to experiments both
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exploring and inefficient by did it how counter the impacts of climate change the science of capturing call the music nights out on the science of the common back in time it takes the mind does have to contend techno on autism. the shocking treatment of disabled people in rumanian state run care in these cages who can not have access to a toilet or water institutions funded by the european union he has his hands and his fate tied to the bed 5 years after highlighting these abuses people in power returns to romania in a 2 part series and discovers the scandal runs further afield europe's recurring shame on al-jazeera they've been through the whole years of political deadlock since the threats of referendum and we still utterly divided will the general election in december that's both his old anything the family boris johnson get rex
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it away does the u.k. go to leader follow the lead tape general election on al-jazeera. is that the international court of justice to defend her country's treatment of muslim read into. in this al-jazeera life and are also coming up reports say democrats in the us are preparing to announce formal articles of impeachment. against president donald trump. police in new zealand open an investigation into the circumstances surrounding multiple deaths and the white island volcanic eruption. and india's
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lower house of parliament has a controversial bill that sets religion as the criteria for granting citizenship to foreign.


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