(Bloomberg) -- Microsoft Corp. Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella, who was born in India, said the country’s recent Citizenship Amendment Law is “sad,” adding his voice to criticism of a policy that has roiled the country and led to violent protests.
The law bans undocumented Muslim migrants from neighboring countries from seeking citizenship in India while allowing immigrants from other religions to do so.
“I think it’s just bad,” Nadella said on Monday at a Microsoft event for technology editors in New York. “If anything, I would love to see a Bangladeshi immigrant who comes to India and creates the next unicorn in India, or becomes the CEO of Infosys. That should be the aspiration.”
The software maker’s Indian Twitter account later tweeted a statement from Nadella that seemed to moderate the initial comments, beginning with the thought that “every country will and should define its borders, protect national security and set immigration policy accordingly.”
“I’m shaped by my Indian heritage, growing up in a multicultural India and my immigrant experience in the United States,“ the written follow-up statement continued. “My hope is for an India where an immigrant can aspire to found a prosperous start-up or lead a multinational corporation benefitting Indian society and the economy at large.”
The comments were reported earlier by Buzzfeed, which asked Nadella the question at the event.
Longtime Silicon Valley venture capitalist Vinod Khosla, also born in India, echoed Nadella’s comments on the topic. “I strongly believe India should be a secular country!” Khosla wrote via email late Monday, when asked about the law.
--With assistance from Sarah McBride.
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