NEW DELHI: Senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal, on Wednesday, during the debate on the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Bill in the Rajya Sabha, said that his party opposes the legislation, citing that it has a legal colour of the two-nation theory. He said that he opposes the Bill as religion cannot be the basis for the acquisition of citizenship.
Sibal also said that he was disturbed over Union Home Minister Amit Shah's statement in the Lok Sabha. He said: "I was very disturbed the other day when distinguished Home Minister said in the other House why we need this Bill. He said Congress had done partition on the basis of religion."
Sibal said he had failed to understand from which history book Shah read this.
Talking about Home Minister, Shah said that he would like to remind him what Savarkar had said. Sibal said that the two-nation theory was not Congress theory.
Quoting Savarkar's statement, Sibal said: "I quote Savarkar. He had said 'there are two antagonistic nations living side by side in India. Several politicians commit the serious mistake in supposing that India is already welded into a harmonious nation, or that it could be welded thus for the mere wish to do so. These are our well-meaning but unthinking friends, take their dreams for realities. That is why they are impatient of communal tangles and attribute them to communal organisations'."
Two nation theory was perpetrated by Savarkar, Sibal said.
Congress member again quoted B.R. Ambedkar, one of the key architects of the Constitution. He said, "Ambedkar wrote: 'Strange it may appear, Savarkar and Jinnah, instead of being opposed to each other on the one nation versus two nations issue, are in complete agreement about it. Both agree, not only agree but insist, that there are two nations in India. One the Muslim nation and the other Hindu nation'."
Sibal thereafter urged Shah to withdraw the allegations. He said, "We in the Congress believed in one nation." He then charged Shah saying: "You don't believe it."
He then said that the Bill is historic as government is changing the basic character of the Constitution. "You are making attempt to change our history. You said crores of people will see ray of hope tomorrow morning, I claim that night will not end for lakhs of people. This dark night will never end," said Sibal urging Shah to rise above politics.
He also questioned where is the provision of religious persecution in the proposed legislation? "There is no such provision," he said. "If man came from Bangladesh in India in 1972 and living here since then, how come he is persecuted, Sibal questioned.
He also said that not a single Muslim fears government. "Idea of India is being destroyed."
The senior Congress leader, in conclusion, said, "Don't convert this republic into Jurassic republic where there are two dinosaurs."