Florida Senate - 2020                            (NP)    SR 1928
       By Senator Farmer
       34-04071-20                                           20201928__
    1                          Senate Resolution                        
    2         A resolution reaffirming Florida as a welcoming state,
    3         expressing the Senate’s solidarity with Florida’s
    4         South Asian community, regardless of religion and
    5         caste, and opposing India’s National Register of
    6         Citizens and Citizenship Amendment Act.
    8         WHEREAS, the Senate supports democratic rights for all
    9  peoples, and opposes discrimination based on religion,
   10  ethnicity, and nationality, and
   11         WHEREAS, the far-right Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)
   12  government of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been
   13  criticized for promoting violence against religious minorities,
   14  silencing dissent, and actions that earned the prime minister
   15  the nickname “the Butcher of Gujarat,” a reference to the 2002
   16  massacre that occurred while Prime Minister Modi was chief
   17  minister of the state of Gujarat, in which an estimated 2,000
   18  people were killed in anti-Muslim violence and many Muslim women
   19  were targeted for rape and other forms of sexual violence, and
   20         WHEREAS, on December 11, 2019, the Indian parliament passed
   21  the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), which the BJP government
   22  claims will help refugees fleeing religious persecution from
   23  neighboring countries, but which in actuality blatantly
   24  discriminates, allowing the National Register of Citizens (NRC)
   25  to be updated for citizenship based on religion, favoring Hindu,
   26  Buddhist, Jain, Parsi, and Christian immigrants, while excluding
   27  Muslim people, and
   28         WHEREAS, the CAA is the first instance of religion being
   29  used as a criterion for Indian citizenship, and
   30         WHEREAS, in August 2019, Prime Minister Modi’s government
   31  published an updated NRC, requiring nearly 2 million people in
   32  the northeastern state of Assam to document their Indian
   33  citizenship or face detention at mass prison and detention camps
   34  that the Indian government has begun to build and fill, and
   35         WHEREAS, most Indians lack documentation, such as birth
   36  certificates, to prove citizenship, and a nationwide expansion
   37  of the NRC could strip hundreds of millions of people, a
   38  disproportionate number of whom are Muslims, oppressed castes,
   39  women, members of the indigenous and LGBT communities, of their
   40  citizenship rights with no option to be renaturalized, and
   41         WHEREAS, the New York Times reported on December 22, 2019,
   42  that the Indian home minister, Amit Shah, had vowed in speeches
   43  to expand the checks used in Assam to other states and to then
   44  use the citizenship law to purge India of “infiltrators” and
   45  “termites,” and
   46         WHEREAS, protests in India against the CAA and the NRC in
   47  December 2019 faced repression, with reports that, in the state
   48  of Uttar Pradesh, police fatally fired live ammunition at
   49  demonstrators and arrested thousands, and, in cities such as
   50  Bijnor, Muzaffarnagar, Meerut, Ghaziabad, Bulandshahr, Aligarh,
   51  Sambhal, Firozabad, and Rampur, police smashed Muslim homes, and
   52         WHEREAS, on January 8, 2020, people across India
   53  demonstrated against the policies of the Modi government, with
   54  protests against the CAA and NRC held in conjunction with a 1
   55  day strike called by 10 trade unions opposing privatization and
   56  neoliberalism and with strikes and demonstrations in rural
   57  communities against the oppression and exploitation of farmers,
   58  showing that a united movement of working people has the
   59  potential power to resist and defeat authoritarianism, and
   60         WHEREAS, this general strike in India was the largest
   61  strike in the history of the world, with an estimated 250
   62  million workers, farmers, and rural laborers stopping work and
   63  joining protests against poverty, exploitation, discrimination,
   64  and authoritarianism, and
   65         WHEREAS, the Indian American Muslim Council, API Chaya,
   66  Tasveer, Seattle South Asians Building Accountability and
   67  Healing, the Ambedkar Periyar Study Circle, and thousands of
   68  activists and organizers have spoken out in this state against
   69  the CAA and the NRC, and
   70         WHEREAS, the Senate believes that the CAA and the NRC are
   71  inconsistent with Florida’s position as a welcoming state for
   72  people of all castes and religions from South Asian communities,
   75  Be It Resolved by the Senate of the State of Florida:
   77         That Florida’s position as a welcoming state for people of
   78  all castes and religions from South Asian communities is
   79  reaffirmed, as is this state’s solidarity with members of its
   80  South Asian community.
   81         BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Senate opposes India’s
   82  National Register of Citizens and the Citizenship Amendment Act
   83  and finds these policies to be discriminatory to Muslims,
   84  oppressed castes, women, and indigenous and LGBT people and
   85  urges the United States Congress to support legislation
   86  censuring the Republic of India for adopting these policies and
   87  to call for the Parliament of India to uphold the Indian
   88  Constitution by repealing the Citizenship Amendment Act,
   89  stopping the National Register of Citizens, and taking steps
   90  toward helping refugees by ratifying various United Nations
   91  treaties on refugees.