Assam NGO demands complete re-verification of NRC

February 19, 2020 04:48 am | Updated 04:48 am IST - GUWAHATI

An Assam NGO, Assam Public Works (APW), has requested the Supreme Court to order a 100% re-verification of the entire National Register of Citizens (NRC) process and a probe by a judicial commission into the alleged misappropriation of funds for the updating exercise.

According to APW, whose 2009 petition in the top court had led to the exercise of updating the 1952 NRC, the inclusion of "80 lakh illegal immigrants, including jihadis" has necessitated the total re-verification.

In its affidavit, the NGO also said that the misuse of NRC funds warranted a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), the National Investigation Agency (NIA) or the Enforcement Directorate (ED).

The NGO named four “jihadis” who allegedly became Indian citizens because of their inclusion in the NRC.

“There are many empty agricultural lands being transformed overnight into populated villages, especially in the Barkhetri Assembly constituency of Nalbari district ... The situation is getting worse with time,” the APW said.

The NGO also blamed the NRC for facilitating such transformation while citing the example of Sipajhar area in northern Assam where "182 bighas of agricultural land have been converted into villages.”

The Supreme Court had monitored the NRC process that saw more than 19 lakh of 3.3 crore applicants being left out of the final list published on August 31, 2019. The process of filing claims in various foreigners’ tribunals by the excluded people is yet to begin.

In November 2019, the Supreme Court relieved Prateek Hajela from his post as the State NRC Coordinator. He was later replaced by Hitesh Dev Sarma.

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