Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) lawmaker MLA Narayan Tripathi has raised questions on the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB), saying the country should not be divided based on religious beliefs.
He said that he spoke from his experience of hailing from a village and its present circumstances, adding, "First of all, either we should respect and follow Baba Bhim Rao Amedkar's Constitution or tear it away."
Tripathi's remarks came on a day when Prime Minister Narendra Modi said his government brought in the CAB to correct "historical" injustices and recalled the Nehru-Liaquat pact to assert that the law fulfills India's "old promise" to religious minorities in neighbouring countries.
"It has been enshrined in the Constitution that a division is not possible in the secular country on the basis of religion. Despite this the division is being effected," Tripathi continued.
The lawmaker then proceeded to say that this proves a point that either one is with the Constitution or against it, reports the Indian English language news agency Hindustan Times.
Tripathi added that the country is facing civil conflict because of the new law.
"People have stopped looking at each other. In my village, Muslims used to give us respect and used to wish us every time we met, but today they don't like to see us."
He said that peace is not possible in a country, village, home and locality which is affected by civil conflict.
"We talk of global brotherhood and unity but if we divide the society in the name of religion the country can't go ahead," the BJP MLA said.
Prior to joining BJP, Tripathi was with the Samajwadi Party (Indian democratic-socialist party).