‘Doubt if error-free NRC will be published’: Ex-Assam CM Tarun Gogoi
Former Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi attacked the BJP even as he claimed how he suspected that the National Register of Citizens list will not be error-free and create more problems in the state.
Addressing a press conference in Guwahati, Gogoi said, “The NRC which will come out on August 31, I suspect it won’t be correct and it will just be wastepaper.”
Gogoi said his doubts have increased after the happenings of the last few days. “Instead of solving problems it will create issues,” he said, adding that genuine Indians maybe end up being excluded from NRC, including Bengali speaking Hindus, Muslims, Nepali and members of the tea tribe communities.
The NRC exercise has come under attack from the state government and the state unit of the BJP, too, who have been demanding re-verification, a plea which was turned down by the Supreme Court which is monitoring the exercise.
On Thursday, in a discussion on NRC in Assam assembly after some ruling party MLAs raised the issue attacking state coordinator Prateek Hajela, minister and Chandra Mohan Patowary gave district wise exclusion and inclusion figures. Patowary though attacked the accuracy of the NRC citing low exclusion rate in two Muslim majority districts— Dhubri and South Salmara— along the Indiao-Bangladesh border.
Gogoi said the government was creating doubts in the minds of people. “We saw that the state government was happy and now it is the opposite. This is creating doubt in our minds.”
The former CM claimed that this showed how even the Centre is incapable of producing the NRC and asked how the government will detect foreigners leave alone deportation, which has been its major election plank.
Gogoi questioned what he termed as home minister Amit Shah’s silence on the issue.”Amit Shah said see we have done the NRC which the Congress was not able to do, but now he is silent. We suspect that they themselves are confused. They have promised to bring the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill,” Gogoi said.
The BJP hit back at Gogoi and the Congress and said they have no moral right to speak about it. “It is not about being happy or unhappy. BJP is very serious about the NRC matter. It is not something that one should do politics on. Congress failed to even start the NRC pilot project (in 2010),” said Rupam Goswami, a spokesperson of the BJP.