It is inappropriate for one legislature to pass judgement on another, Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla said in a letter to European Parliament President David Maria Sassoli on Monday (January 27), ahead of the legislature’s debate on the resolutions moved by its lawmakers against the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Act.
The speaker’s letter to Sassoli comes after close to 600 lawmakers in the 751-member European Parliament moved six resolutions against the CAA, saying the enactment of the law marked a dangerous shift in India’s citizenship regime.
“I understand that Joint Motion for Resolution has been introduced in the European Parliament on the Indian Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019. This act provides for easier citizenship to those who have been subjected to religious persecution in our immediate neighbourhood,” Birla said in the letter.
“As members of Inter Parliamentary Union, we should respect sovereign processes of fellow legislatures, especially in democracies,” he said. It is inappropriate for one legislature to pass judgement on another, a practice that can surely be misused by vested interests, Birla said. “I would urge you to consider the proposed resolution in this light, confident that none of us want to set an unhealthy precedent,” he said.
Earlier, Vice President Venkaiah Naidu said there is no scope for outside interference in India’s internal matters and the country is capable of addressing its concerns on its own, in reference to the resolutions tabled by the European Union lawmakers.
Addressing a gathering after a book launch event here, Naidu said he was concerned at the trend of foreign bodies interfering in matters that are “completely within the purview of Indian Parliament and government”. “There was no scope for outside interference in India’s internal matters,” Naidu asserted.
He said whenever basic and fundamental rights of citizens came under threat, “citizens rose in unison and defended them as was seen against emergency”. “Our polity and democracy do provide enough space for expressing differences and dissents whenever warranted,” he said, adding that as a result, India has emerged as the most vibrant democracy in the world.
(With inputs from agencies)