The Supreme Court of India heard more than 140 petitions challenging the validity of the new citizenship law Credit: File image

New Delhi: The Supreme Court of India on Wednesday refused to grant an interim stay of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), 2019 and the National Population Register (NPR) without hearing the Centre.

The bench headed by Chief Justice of India SA Bobde heard more than 140 petitions challenging the new citizenship law. It also hinted at referring pleas challenging the validity of CAA to a larger five-judge Constitutional bench.

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CAA was passed in both Houses of Parliament in December last year following which widespread violent protests erupted in Assam and across the country. Curfew was imposed and internet clamped down in several parts of the country. Several peaceful protests continue to date against the new citizenship law.

The apex court said that the Centre will have to file replies on all other CAA-related pleas within four weeks, except those from Assam and Tripura as it will consider hearing pleas from these two states separately.

Also, SC passed an order asking High Courts not to entertain any pleas on CAA until the apex court finishes deciding this matter.

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