Why we need Citizenship Amendment Bill, 2019

Hindus and other non-Muslim minorities have been suffering genocides in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan since 1947. So they need to be granted citizenship of India when they land here to escape persecution.

The proposed Citizenship Amendment Bill would facilitate this. Here are some key facts that would help one understand the status of Hindus and non-Muslim minorities in India’s neighbouring countries:

1947-50
 SARDAR PATEL’S REMARK

Sardar Patel’s letter to Prime Minister Nehru on 2 September, 1947

From morning till night these days, my time is here fully occupied with the talks of woe and atrocities which reach me through Hindu and Sikh refugees from all over Western Pakistan. (Durga Das (ed.) Sardar Patel’s Correspondence, vol. 4, Ahmadabad: Navajivan, 1972, p. 314)

SITUATION IN SIND, PAKISTAN

Prime Minister Nehru’s telegram to B.G. Kher on 8 January, 1948

“In view of developments in Sind it has become urgently necessary to evacuate Hindu and Sikh population.” (National Archives of India, Ministry of External Affairs, 51-6/48)

Prime Minister Nehru’s letter to B.G. Kher on 9 January, 1948

“Yet the situation in Sind is bad and I fear we must face a large exodus…… We

cannot leave them in Sind.” (Selected Works of Jawaharlal Nehru, vol. 15, p. 136) Prime Minister Nehru’s letter to Sardar Patel on 12 January, 1948
As you know, it is become necessary to make adequate arrangements for large scale evacuation of non-Muslims from Sind…… It is clear that people from Sind
can be evacuated easily by sea. [Durga Das (ed.), Sardar Patel Correspondence, vol. 4, Ahmadabad: Navajivan, 1972, p. 244]

PAKISTAN’S ANTI-SIKH POLICY
Both (Indian and Pakistan) sides had signed, on 20 July, at Mountbatten’s behest, a declaration that they would respect the rights of minorities. But Mountbatten was right in suspecting that they did not know what they were signing. The Sikh policy was to exterminate the Muslims in their midst. The Muslims, with their eyes on the rich Sikh farmlands, were content to drive the Sikhs out and only massacre those who insisted on remaining. (Leonard Mosely, The Last Days of the British Raj, Bombay: Jaico, 1960, p, 280)
British Governor of West Punjab, Francis Mudie, who wrote to Mr Jinnah on 5 September 1947, “I am telling everyone that I don’t care how the Sikhs get across the border; the great thing is to get rid of them as soon as possible.” (LeonardMosely, The Last Days of the British Raj, Bombay: Jaico, 1960, p. 281)
HELPING HANDS FOR THE HINDUS OF PAKISTAN
Sardar’s efforts – Letter to Prime Minister Nehru on 14 January, 1948
“I have already written a letter to Kher myself and will speak to him and other ministers during my forthcoming visit to Bombay. I shall also take up the question for arrangements for the reception of these refugees in Kathiawar States. [Durga Das (ed.), Sardar Patel Correspondence, vol. 4, Ahmadabad: Navajivan, 1972, p. 245]

CONGRESS LEADER BECOMES VICTIM
Indian High Commissioner in Pakistan, Sri Prakasa’s live account on the situation of Sind
-letter to Sardar Patel on 12 January, 1948 (story of a senior congress leader Popatlal A. Bhopatkar)
“It was rather surprising how even he was not spared. On 6 January, the day of the murder and loot, his house was entered into by a mob which deprived him of everything he possessed, including his car, his cash, his furniture, his wife’s jewellery, his clothes etc. he was just sent out if his house alone with stab wounds and has taken shelter with a friend.” [Durga Das (ed.), Sardar Patel Correspondence, Ahamdabad: Navajivan, 1972, p. 246] HINDUS OF EAST PAKISTAN
By the end of 1947, about 4,25,000 Hindus had migrated from the area which is now East Pakistan to West Bengal.(Extracts from Recurrent Exodus of Minorities from East Pakistan and Disturbances in India, 1965, p. 2)

 1950

PAKISTAN’S OFFICIAL STATEMENT AGAINST HINDUS
Liaquat Ali Khan’s message to the nation on 3rdanniversary of independence, 14 August, 1950
“Let us so live and act that hundreds of years hence when history recalls our times it will say: These people lived, struggled and suffered like true sons of Islam so that their children may live in honour and glory.”

SITUATION IN EAST PAKISTAN
Extracts from Recurrent Exodus of Minorities from East Pakistan and Disturbances in India, 1965, p. 4

  • After 1950 killings with which we shall presently deal, the Hindu holdings of properties fell to 12.7% and nearly 90% of Hindu citizen of Dhaka migrated to India. Similar is the case with the student population in Dhaka.
  • From 2900 Hindu boys in schools before partition, 2000 remained before February 1950 killings. And at the end of December 1950 the number was reduced to 140.
  • Similarly there were about 2100 Hindu girls in schools before partition about 1200 before the February 1950 incident of these only 25 remained by December 1950.
  • The population of Hindu college students fell from 65% at partition to 7% in January 1950 and at the end of 1950 only 12 remained.
  • Similar is the case with lawyers. Hindu shops at the time of Partition and at the end of 1950 only 157 remained.
  • Of these the population of There were about 1500 in each of the 45 big and small towns, with the exception of the five smaller ones, Hindu inhabitants were in majority though taking. The total population the number of Hindus amounted to 30%.

HEADLINES IN NEWSPAPERS
Azad of Dacca
“Real enemies of Pakistan are Hindus” (9 February, 1950)
“Keep watch over every Hindu house.” (10 February, 1950)

1969

FORCIBLE CONVERSION

Statement by Vidya Charan Shukla, Minister of State, Ministry of Home Affairs in Rajya Sabha on 26 March, 1969

According to information received from J&K Government 21 Hindu families crossed to our side during the last few weeks. Some of them stated that they were being asked to change their religion.

 1971

HINDU DRIVEN OUT OF PAKISTAN

Official number given by Surendra Pal Singh, Minister of State, Ministry of External Affairs in Rajya Sabha on 13 August, 1970 (Till 27 July, 1970)

May: 30995

June: 54680

July: 35515

Remaining Hindus in West Pakistan: 6, 21,805; East Pakistan: 93, 79,669 (according to the census of 1961)

SELECTIVE GENOCIDE

Archer K. Blood, American Consul General in Bangladesh

“On March 28 I sent a telegram captioned ‘Selective Genocide’. As far as I know, it was the first time that term had been used, but it was not to be the last…… Here

in Dacca we are mute and horrified whiteness to a reign of terror by the Pak Military…… Streets of Decca are aflood with Hindus and others seeking to get out

of Decca. (Archer K. Blood, the Cruel Birth of Bangladesh, Dhaka: The American Canter Library, 2002, pp. 213-214)

INFLAMMATORY SPEECHES AGAINST HINDUS

Evidence with us also discloses that Sabur Khan had been making inflammatory speeches rousing the Muslims against not only India but Hindus in East Pakistan. Speeches he is reported to have said that he will make even the leaves of trees shout ‘Alaha Alaha’. And that either the Hindus will have to do likewise or there would be no place for them in East Pakistan. (Recurrent Exodus of Minorities from East Pakistan and Disturbances in India, 1965, p. 56)

TOTAL NUMBER OF REFUGEES – ACCORDING TO VARIOUS REPORTS

According to Government of India the number of refugees was around 8 million. But various sources says around 6-12 million

Washington Daily News: 6 million (30 June, 1971)

Die Zeit: 6 million (9 July, 1971)

New York Times: 6 million (14 July, 1971)

St. Louis Post-Dispatch: 6.5 million (1 August, 1971)

Newsweek: 7.5 million (2 August, 1971)

Time: 7.5 million (2 September, 1971)

National Geographic: 10 million (September 1972)

Sen. Kennedy: 12 million (15 August, 1971)

The United Nations in Bangladesh: 10 million (1972)

Newsweek: 10 million (27 March, 1972)

(www.virtualbangladesh.com)

‘THEY ARE NOT REFUGEES’

Prime Minister Indira Gandhi’s statement

So massive a migration, in so short a time, is unprecedented in recorded history. About three and a half million people have come into India from Bangladesh during the last eight weeks…… They come from every social class and age group.

They are not refugees in the sense we have understood this word since Partition. They are victims of war who have sought refuge from the military terror across our frontier. (Lok Sabha, 24 May, 1971)

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

Telegram from the U.S. Embassy in India to the U.S. Department of State on 11 June, 1971

The number of refugees is now 5.4 million and that rate of flow is increasing. This should be evidence enough that no matter what noises President Yahya may make about restoration of normalcy, he has not yet done anything to effectively impede reign of terror and brutality of Pakistan army, the root cause of the refugee exodus. (www.genocidebangladesh.org)

UNITED NATIONS ORGANISATION

Statement by G.S. Kahlon, Rehabilitation Secretary, Government of India in the 22nd session of the Executive Committee of UNHCR held in Geneva

“Beginning from end of March, within a couple of months total influx of refugees into India had gone up to nearly four million, and today it has crossed 9 million already, without any signs of them returning to East Pakistan at all. Average inflow per day still continues to be between 30,000 to 50,000 persons, and if this rate continues at this scale we may well have not less than 12 million refugees on our hands by end of this year.” (www.genocidebangladesh.org)

1987 

ATTACKS ON HINDU TEMPLES IN SIND

Eduardo Faleiro, Minister of State, Ministry of External Affairs

Reports emanating from Pakistan in May-June, 1987 indicate that there have been attacks on Hindu temples as well as on shops and properties belonging to the Hindu community in Sind. (Rajya Sabha, 28 July, 1987)

2012

KILLING OF HINDU DOCTORS IN PAKISTAN

Statement by E. Ahmad, Minister of State, Ministry of External Affairs

Government has seen media reports about killing of Hindu doctors in Pakistan on November 7, 2011. Three Hindu doctors were reportedly killed and one sustained injuries when attacked in their village in Taluka Chak, District Shikarpur in Pakistan. (Rajya Sabha, 22 March, 2012)

HINDU FAMILIES MIGRATED FROM PAKISTAN

Statement by Mullappally Ramachandran, Minister of State, Ministry of Home Affairs

In 2009, 6,437 Hindus entered India from Pakistan via Attari ICP. Of these, 1,198 did not return. In 2010, 6,036 Hindus entered and 491 did not return. Similarly, in 2011, 5,012 Hindus entered and 1248 did not return.

As on June 30, 2012, a total number of 18,185 (progressive figures) Pakistani nationals were staying on Long Term Visa (LTV) in the country.

Government has seen reports that some Pakistani nationals belonging to minority communities including Hindus, who came to India on valid visas have not gone back to Pakistan on the grounds of religious persecution in Pakistan. Representations have been received requesting for allowing extension of visas of such Pakistani nationals and also for permitting them to apply for Long Term Visa.

(Rajya Sabha, 5 September, 2012)

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