Mamata Banerjee says Assam NRC plan to throw out Bengalis and Biharis

30 July, 2018, 17:44 | Author: Mable Gonzales
  • People queue to check their names on the draft list of the National Register of Citizens in India's Assam state

Just over four million of the more than 30 million people who applied to be on the list were excluded from the draft, said Shailesh, the registrar general of India, who uses one name.

The cutoff date to be eligible for Indian citizenship is March 24, 1971, as per the Assam Accord signed in 1985. Most settled in Assam, which shares a long border with Bangladesh. People will be given time to file for corrections, Indian officials said. About 2,000 Muslims, including children, were masscared in a single day in Assam's Nellie village in 1983 at the height of the anti-foreigners agitation.

The NRC will include the names of all Indian citizens who have been residing in Assam before March 25, 1971.

The migrants included many Hindus, but Modi has issued orders stating that no Hindu or members of other minorities from Pakistan or Bangladesh would be considered an illegal immigrant even if they entered the country without valid documents before 2014.

"These people will become stateless - their future remains hanging", Mahanta said.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee accused the BJP of doing politics ahead of the 2019 elections.

There was no need to panic, Singh said on Monday, adding that those missing from the draft list could re-submit their papers.

Women queue to check their names on the final draft of the National Register of Citizens in Assam's Morigoan district. AFP
Women queue to check their names on the final draft of the National Register of Citizens in Assam's Morigoan district. AFP

The state's BJP spokesman was not immediately available for comment, but India's home minister, Rajnath Singh, called the registration process impartial.

The home minister said the NRC process is being carried out with complete fairness and transparency and it has been monitored by the Supreme Court.

Rivals say that as Modi's government faces disillusionment for failing to deliver on jobs and prosperity, it will step up religious mobilization across the country. But the NRC told India's top court this month that it would drop 150,000 people from that list - a third of them married women - mainly because they had provided false information or inadmissible documents. "However, you can not force somebody on the people of Assam and you have to ensure a balance between the two - aspirations of Indigenous people of Assam and the humanitarian consideration", Mr Sarma said in an exclusive interview with NDTV.

Here is an explainer on what the Assam NRC is? The first list of the NRC process was released in December 31 previous year, in which around 1.9 crore people out of the total applications of 3.29 crore people were included.

"If their names are not in the final draft, it doesn't mean that these people are illegal", Hajela told Al Jazeera. "We can not do anything about it", said Rajnath Singh.

Assam, a state of 33 million people known for its lush tea estates, has for decades been racked by violence between indigenous tribes and settlers. "Terrible things happened to our family once, we don't want a repeat".

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