U.S. International Commission on Religious Freedom (USCIRF)
Part of: GS Prelims and GS-II – International Affairs
- In the wake of the passage of the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) in the Lok Sabha, USCIRF has expressed concern over it and considered recommending sanctions against Home Minister Amit Shah and other top leaders.
- USCIRF fears that the Indian government is creating a religious test for Indian citizenship through CAB that would strip citizenship from millions of Muslims
- In response, the External Affairs Ministry said India had the prerogative to validate its citizenry through various policies like any other country.
- The USCIRF is an independent, bipartisan US federal government commission- an advisory body, which advises the US Congress and the administration on issues pertaining to international religious freedom
- In practice, the USCIRF has little teeth in implementation, but acts as a conscience-keeper for the two branches in the US government — the legislature and the executive.
- It often takes maximalist or extreme positions, and has been used by civil society groups to put pressure on US Congress members and administration officials.