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All-party meeting soon on NRC

A file photo of an NRC centre in Assam, where people queue up to check their names on the draft list of the NRC in Nagaon district of Assam. Photo: Reuters

A file photo of an NRC centre in Assam, where people queue up to check their names on the draft list of the NRC in Nagaon district of Assam. Photo: Reuters   | Photo Credit: Reuters

Sonowal assures CPI(M) discussion on fate of people to be excluded

Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal will convene an all-party meeting to discuss the fate of people to be left out of the updated National Register of Citizens (NRC) to be published in July, the Communist Party of India (Marxist) has said.

A CPI(M) delegation met Mr. Sonowal on Wednesday evening and submitted a memorandum on major issues affecting the State. “He assured us that all political parties and diverse groups would be called for a meeting for suggestions on those to be excluded from the NRC,” Suprakash Talukdar, CPI(M) Central Committee member said on Thursday.

No date yet

The Chief Minister’s Office confirmed the meeting. “The date has not been fixed yet,” a spokesperson said.

“We requested the Chief Minister to organise the all-party meeting well ahead of July 31,” Mr. Talukdar said.

The exercise to update the Supreme Court-monitored NRC began in May 2015. The deadline for this document for sifting illegal migrants from genuine Indian citizens living in Assam is July 31.

About 40.07 lakh people out of the 3.29 crore applicants were excluded from the complete draft of the NRC that was published on July 30, 2018. The excluded were given a three-month window ending December 31, 2018 for reapplying with fresh set of documents to be back on the list.

The issue of Foreigners’ Tribunals (FT) declaring genuine Indian citizens as foreigners and throwing them in detention centres is also likely to figure in the all-party meeting.

‘Not fair’

“The case of Kargil War veteran Mohammed Sanaullah has made it clear that the FTs and the Assam Police’s border wing have not been fair. So we have asked the government to find out if people are being falsely detained as foreigners,” Mr. Talukdar said.

Mr. Sanaullah, who retired as an Honorary Captain from the Army in August 2017, was declared a foreigner on May 23 and sent to the Goalpara detention camp five days later. The Gauhati High Court granted him bail on June 7.

The CPI(M) also demanded revision of the doubtful, or D-voters’, list for people with proper documents to be allowed to exercise their franchise. The Election Commission had before the Lok Sabha polls said there were some 1.2 lakh D-voters in Assam.

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Printable version | Mar 29, 2020 5:25:29 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/all-party-meeting-soon-on-nrc/article28089275.ece

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