On Monday, Microsoft's Indian-origin CEO Satya Nadella voiced concern over the contentious Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), saying what is happening is "sad". But this is not the first time he has spoken against any citizenship or immigration law.
In January 2017, Silicon Valley's top executive, India-born Microsoft CEO's Satya Nadella, condemned President Donald Trump's immigration ban on people from seven Muslim-majority countries, voicing concern that the move could directly hit their own staffers and stop bringing great talent to the US.
Condemning the move, Nadella, in a post on LinkedIn, said "As an immigrant and as a CEO, I've both experienced and seen the positive impact that immigration has on our company, for the country, and for the world. We will continue to advocate on this important topic."
Later, Microsoft issued a statement in response to the January 27, 2017 executive order on immigration: "We believe the executive order is misguided and a fundamental step backwards. There are more effective ways to protect public safety without creating so much collateral damage to the country’s reputation and values.”
On January 30, Satya Nadella hosted an employee Q&A, where he offered more personal remarks on the immigration ban. During which Nadella said, "I always come back to two things. One is the enduring principles and values that drive us as a company, that have made us and this country what it is, and my own personal story. There is no place for bias or bigotry in any society, in any context. That’s where we start from. We will always as a company stand for that diversity and inclusion. And we’ll keep pushing at it, pushing at it, and making progress. That’s core to who we are. That I believe is core to what America is."
"I mean, think about it, I am a product of the fundamental greatness of the United States. It is the ingenuity of the American technology that reached me where I was growing up that even made it possible for me to dream of being able to be part of this journey. It is the enlightened immigration policy of this country that even made it possible for me to come here in the first place, and gave me all this opportunity. And we will do that consistently. We’re not going to overreact because of any one incident, but we will always stand for what we believe are these enduring principles that really are going to be about us as a company, but also recognizing that we’re a multinational company that is an American company,” he further added.
The company later said that, "As Satya made clear during the meeting, Microsoft will continue to work directly with employees and their families affected by the executive order, including providing them with legal and other assistance. And the company will continue to advocate strongly on these issues with the Administration and with Congress."
Trump's initial January 2017 executive order banning entry to the US by citizens of several Muslim-majority countries launched a fierce fight in the federal courts over whether the policy amounts to an unlawful "Muslim ban" or is a legal exercise of presidential power.
The administration revised the policy following court challenges, and the Supreme Court allowed it to largely go into effect in December 2017 while legal challenges continued. In June 2018, the high court upheld the new version of the ban. As a result, most people from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen have not been able to enter the US.