The Bill states providing citizenship to non-Muslim minorities from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, and Pakistan. Amit Shah said the Muslims of India have "nothing to worry about".
"In Lok Sabha, there was a huge misunderstanding that it is against the Muslims. The Muslims of this country have to worry about anything. But should the Muslims of Pakistan be made citizens? Should Muslims from Bangladesh and Afghanistan and the rest of the world also be given citizenship? The country cannot run like this. The citizenship will be given only to persecuted religious minorities only from these three countries," Shah said.
Strongly opposing the controversial Bill, Congress MP Anand Sharma said, the bill is "an assault on the foundational values of the Indian constitution and against the Preamble of the Constitution which talks of liberty, equality and secularism".
"The provisions of this bill affect lakhs of people who have been persecuted. After partition it was our vision that the minorities in these three countries should live with their rights intact and be able to practice their religion freely," he observed.
Shah said, adding that "after several decades we have realized that whether it is Afghanistan or Pakistan or Bangladesh, the minorities were not protected and they were not given their legal rights," Home Minister said.
"Where have they gone? Either they have been killed or they were forced to change their religion or have come to India as refugees. They ought to have been given legal rights but this did not happen," he added after the Opposition parties opposed the bill.