‘No country says everybody is welcome’: Jaishankar defends CAA

The minister said the government tried to reduce the number of stateless people through this law

Jaishankar also criticised the UNHRC for its criticism on the situation in Jammu and Kashmir | PTI File

Defending the Union government’s Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Saturday (March 7) said no country in the world says everybody is welcome and that the contentious legislation was aimed at reducing the number of stateless people.

Jaishankar criticised the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) for its criticism on the situation in Jammu and Kashmir, saying its director had been wrong previously too and one should look at the UN body’s past record on handling the Kashmir issue.

“We have tried to reduce the number of stateless people through this legislation. That should be appreciated,” the minister said when asked about the law at the ET Global Business Summit. “We have done it in a way that we do not create a bigger problem for ourselves.”

Related news: UN rights chief files intervention application in Supreme Court on CAA

“Everybody, when they look at citizenship, have a context and has a criterion. Show me a country in the world which says everybody in the world is welcome. Nobody says that,” the minister said.

The external affairs minister said moving out of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) was in the interest of India’s business.

Asked about the UNHRC director not agreeing with India on the Kashmir issue, Jaishankar said the UNHRC director has been wrong before.

“UNHRC skirts around cross-border terrorism as if it has nothing to do with country next door. Please understand where they are coming from; look at UNHRC’s record how they handled Kashmir issue in past,” he added.

(With inputs from agencies)

Related news: UK expresses concern over potential impact of citizenship law

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