The Bombay High Court on Wednesday refused to hear a Public Interest Litigation filed by one Urmila Kowe challenging the constitutional validity of the Citizenship Amendment Act.
A division bench of Justice RK Deshpande and Justice AB Borkar of Nagpur bench observed that the Supreme Court was already hearing petitions challenging the said act and asked the petitioner to approach the apex court.
Today, the bench of Chief Justice of India SA Bobde, Justice Abdul Nazeer and Justice Sanjiv Khanna granted four weeks' time to the Centre to file a reply to the 140 petitions challenging the newly enacted act which has faced much opposition across the country. The top court also restrained High Courts from dealing with similar pleas.
The said PIL was filed yesterday and Advocate Ashwin Ingole appeared on behalf of the petitioner, Additional Solicitor General UM Aurangabadkar for the Union of India and AGP AS Fulzele for the State.
After ASG Aurangabadkar and AGP Fulzele informed the bench that the apex court is already hearing challenges to the law which was enacted on December 12, 2019.
"Learned A.S.G.I. and the learned Additional Government Pleader have brought to our notice that about 100 petitions are filed before the Apex Court challenging the constitutional amendment, which is the subject matter of the challenge in the present writ petition and the matters are being heard by the Apex Court.
In view of this, on the ground of propriety, we refuse to entertain this PIL. If the petitioner desires, it is open for him to approach the Apex Court."
The said PIL states-
"The Act is arbitrary, unreasonable, irrational and violative of the fundamental rights of every citizen. The Preamble to the Constitution of India lays down that the State has no religion and there cannot be any discrimination among citizens. It is violative of the secular nature of the Constitution of India and is discriminatory. It covers only a class of minorities and overlooks other reportedly persecuted religious groups."