Three months after Assam announced it would not accept the National Register of Citizens list because it was “erroneous” with “wrongful exclusions and inclusions”, the office of the NRC State Coordinator, in an official memo to all district magistrates two days ago, sought details of those wrongfully included in the final NRC. It sought replies within a day.
Published on August 31, 2019, the state’s final NRC list left out over 19 lakh people, many of them Hindus.
The memo, signed by NRC State Coordinator Hitesh Dev Sarma, stated it was a “matter of utmost importance”, and that it “has come to the knowledge of the undersigned that after publication of final NRC on 31st August, 2019, few names of ineligible persons are found present in the final NRC”.
The “ineligible persons”, it said, particularly referred to “Doubtful Voters (DV), Declared Foreigner (DF), descendants of Doubtful Voters and Declared Foreigners (DVD, DFD) and those with cases pending in Foreigners’ Tribunal (PFT)”.
Under NRC rules, the DFs, DVs, PFTs and those who have drawn ‘legacy’ from such persons are to be excluded from NRC. “However, the final list includes many such people. It was not correct then, so it has to be corrected now. That is why this step is being taken,” said a top NRC official who did not wish to be named.
The publication of the final NRC left the state BJP government and the NGO Assam Public Works (APW), whose petition had led to the NRC exercise, unhappy with the list. They called it “incorrect” and demand re-verification of the names.
Earlier this week, the APW moved the Supreme Court again, demanding complete reverification, alleging that the final NRC had almost “eighty lakh foreigners” including “jehadis”.
Sarma was unavailable for comment. In a Facebook post in February 2019, he said there were “lakhs and lakhs of Bangladeshis in the NRC”.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines