Protests continue against new citizenship law
(18 Dec 2019) Demonstrators continued to throng India’s capital on Wednesday in protest at the Supreme Court’s decision to postpone hearing a challenge to a new citizenship law. The new law provides a path to citizenship for non-Muslim migrants, and has ignited demonstrations in India over the past week. The court said it would delay hearing the case until 22 January. The new law applies to Hindus, Christians and other religious minorities, who are in India illegally, but can demonstrate religious persecution in Muslim-majority Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan. It does not apply to Muslims. Critics say that the new law is part of the Hindu nationalist-led government’s agenda to marginalize India’s 200 million Muslims, and argue it goes against the spirit of the country’s secular constitution. Prime minister Narendra Modi has defended it as a humanitarian gesture.