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National Register of Citizens list prepared last year not final: Senior official

National Register of Citizens list prepared last year not final: Senior official 2

Guwahati: The National Register of Citizens list prepared last year was a supplementary one and not the final list as claimed by the previous NRC coordinator, a senior official at the NRC authority in Assam said.

The official’s clarification came after at least one organisation moved court in the wake of the current NRC coordinator, Hitesh Dev Sarma, writing to all deputy commissioners and district registrars of citizen registration, directing them to weed out ineligible people from the NRC.

The NRC is yet to be notified by the Registrar General of India.

The Supreme Court had in August last year directed that an appropriate regime be enacted for the security of the data, on lines similar to that provided for Aadhaar data, the NRC officer, who did not want to be named, told ET. According to the court, “Only thereafter, the list of inclusions and exclusions shall be made available to the state government, central government and the Registrar General of India,” the person said. As per the court, only hard copies of the supplementary list of inclusions should be published before that, he said.

The official added: “The NRC list published last year with 31 million eligible names and leaving out about 1.9 million people is a supplementary list for the Supreme Court had only mandated publication of a supplementary list. It cannot be the final list as stated by the then NRC coordinator, Prateek Hajela.”

The Jamiat Ulama-i-Hind has moved the Supreme Court against the current NRC coordinator’s direction to issue speaking orders for the deletion of the names of people ineligible to be included on the list.

According to Sarma’s letter, as per reports from district officials, names of some ineligible people belonging to categories such as declared foreigners and those with their cases pending before foreigners tribunals, and their descendants, had found entry into the NRC. It directed the officials to remove such names after “specifically ascertaining the identity” of the people.

Meanwhile, the Assam Public Works, the main petitioner in the NRC case in the Supreme Court, said it would file a contempt of court petition against former NRC coordinator Hajela for claiming that the list published last year was the final one.

Will fix list after polls: Minister

Guwahati: Assam finance minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said after the assembly elections, the state government would take steps to correct irregularities in the NRC if allowed by the Supreme Court.

“We are seeking the court’s nod. If no irregularity is found it is okay then. However, we need to do a test,” he said.

Assembly elections in Assam are slated for next year.

Talking to the media, the minister alleged that the previous NRC coordinator, Prateek Hajela, had manipulated the preparation of the list.

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