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No country says everybody is welcome: Jaishankar hits out at CAA critics

"We have tried to reduce the number of stateless people through this legislation. That should be appreciated. We have done it in a way that we do not create a bigger problem for ourselves," Jaishankar added.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: March 7, 2020 4:32:03 pm
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar was speaking at the ET Global Business Summit. (File Photo)

Amid ongoing protests over the amended Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar Saturday defended the controversial legislation and said that no country in the world says everybody is welcome.

“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,” Jaishankar said while speaking at the ET Global Business Summit.

“We have tried to reduce the number of stateless people through this legislation. That should be appreciated. We have done it in a way that we do not create a bigger problem for ourselves,” Jaishankar added.

Under the CAA, the cutoff for citizenship is December 31, 2014 and is extended to Hindus, Christians, Sikhs, Parsis, Buddhists, and Jains from Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan. It has become controversial largely because it excludes Muslims.

Hitting out at the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) for its criticism on the situation in Jammu and Kashmir, the minister said one should look at the body’s past record of handling the Kashmir matter.

When asked about the UNHRC director not agreeing with India’s stand on Kashmir, he said, “UNHRC director has been wrong before. The body 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 also said that moving out of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) was in the interest of India’s business.

-with PTI inputs

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