The BJP-led state government in Assam is to move to the Supreme Court, once again, for 20 percent sample verification of the draft National Register of Citizens (NRC) in border districts along Bangladesh and 10 percent in other districts.
According to Economic Times report, the final list of NRC was released by the government on 31 August at all NRC Seva Kendra (NSK) across the state. In the final draft, published in July last year, of the 3.29 crore registered names, as many as 40,07,707 applicants found their names excluded.
According to the Assam government, 19,06,657 people have been left out of the final list of NRC. All legal options, including the right to appeal in the highest courts of India, is open to these people. The government has vowed to provide them with legal assistance to fight their case.
Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said the state government would approach the Supreme Court again for a re-verification process, on a pilot basis, in a couple of districts to try and address the anomalies.
“The NRC authority has registered many cases where documents were questionable after which we asked for a re-verification of 20 percent of the cases in border districts and 10 percent in other districts as we found that in border areas, where populations were high, deletions were low, whereas in tribal areas deletions were higher in proportion. The Supreme Court denied that request. We will go back again to the SC and ask that at least in two districts, on a pilot basis, re-verification should happen,” Sarma told The Hindu.
Recently the SC had rejected the same proposal before. The Assam and Central governments appealed to the Supreme Court for 20 percent sample re-verification of the names in districts bordering Bangladesh and a 10 percent sample re-verification in the remaining districts in Assam. But the apex court rejected the application.
Over 36 lakh of those left out, had filed “claims” against the exclusion and of the 2.89 crore included, objections were filed against around two lakh people.
The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) assured people left out of the NRC for Assam, are not "stateless" and will continue to enjoy all the rights as before till they exhaust all remedies available under the law. It said exclusion from the NRC has no implication on the rights of an individual resident in Assam and that they will not be deprived of any rights or entitlements which they have enjoyed before.
The ministry's comments came in the wake of commentaries in sections of the foreign media about certain aspects of the final NRC which it said are "incorrect". MEA spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said the NRC is a court-mandated and-monitored exercise and not an "executive driven" process.
He said the NRC would give effect to the Assam Accord of 1985 which promised to take care of citizens of the state.
With inputs from agencies
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Updated Date: Sep 02, 2019 11:46:00 IST