New Delhi: The Supreme Court of India has pushed the deadline for the publication of the Assam National Register of Citizens (NRC) by one month. It will now be published on 31st August.
The order was passed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice Rahinton Fali Nariman on a plea that was submitted by both the Central and Assam governments.
The plea for to push the deadline was sought by the authorities to conduct re-verification of names to check wrongful inclusions along the border districts.
The re-verification is done in order to check if illegal immigrants have entered the NRC. He alleged that illegal migrants have entered the list in collusion with local NRC officials in Assam.
Solicitor General, Tushar Mehta, while requesting an extension for the deadline cited that illegal immigrants may have entered the NRC and there is a need to verify it before publishing it.
He said, “Illegal immigrants have to be dealt with severely. India cannot be the refugee capital of the world.”
The Solicitor General added, “There is a growing perception that lakhs of illegal immigrants have been included in the NRC list in alleged collusion with local NRC officials in Assam.”
The apex court is monitoring the NRC exercise to identify the illegal immigrants who have entered India. The State has been suffering from the incoming Bangladeshi citizens for decades. This has caused a population shift and has raised many serious socio-economic issues in the state. The first attempt at identifying the illegal immigrants by preparing the list of Indian citizens in NRC in 1951.
The current NRC listing determines Indian citizens based on a cut of date of 24 March, 1971. Those people who entered India before this date and those who provided the requisite papers are allowed to continue as Indian citizens.
Those excluded from the NRC list will have to appear before the Foreigner’s Tribunal and give reason for their exclusion.
When the first NRC draft was published on 30 July, 2018, 40.7 lakh people were excluded from a total of 3.29 crore people. This raised a huge hue and cry. However, the central government is adamant to push with the NRC to stop the menace of illegal immigration that has wreaked the social, political and economic fabric of the state.