1.29 lakh people declared foreigners in Assam, 6 deported: Govt
Nearly 1.3 lakh people have been declared as foreigners in Assam but only six have been deported, the Union home ministry told Lok Sabha on Tuesday. Out of these six, four belonged to Bangladesh and two were from Afghanistan.
The ministry also said that 1.14 lakh persons have been declared as Indians by the foreigners tribunals in Assam as of October 2019.
These tribunals have been set up by the central government to provide an appeal mechanism to people who have failed to make it to the National Register of Citizens (NRC).
Responding to an unstarred question from AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi, Minister of State for Home Nityanand Rai informed the Lok Sabha that “no child has been declared as foreigner by the foreigners tribunals”.
He added that as per information provided by Assam government, total 4,68,905 matters were referred to the tribunal till October, 2019.
The MHA has further claimed that 290 women have been declared as foreigners in Assam.
Nearly two million people were left out of the final version of the NRC list published on August 31 this year as part of an exercise to check illegal immigration. It provoked widespread criticism to the effect that it includes some of those who should have been excluded and excludes some of those who should have been included.
The preparation of the NRC list was undertaken in 2013 on the Supreme Court’s orders, with the objective of identifying and deporting so-called illegal immigrants. Its origin dates back to the Assam Accord of 1985, according to which all aliens who entered the state between January 1966 and March 1971 would be disenfranchised for 10 years, and those who came after March 1971 would be deported. The first draft of the NRC for Assam was published on January 1, 2018, in accordance with the apex court’s direction.
Assam, which had faced influx of people from Bangladesh since the early 20th century, is the only state to have an NRC, first prepared in 1951.