Supreme Court seeks Centre, Assam reply on 5 NRC-related papers
The Centre and Assam were Tuesday asked to file their objections to state coordinator Prateek Hajela’s submission that the five additional documents, as suggested by the Centre, cannot be considered for inclusion in the National Register for Citizens (NRC).
The five documents that the Centre wants Hajela to consider while dealing with claims filed by those excluded in the NRC are names in NRC, 1951; names in electoral roll up to March 24, 1971; citizenship certificate and refugee registration certificate; certified copies of pre-1971 electoral roll, particularly, those issued from the State of Tripura; and ration card. The SC had, during the last hearing, permitted the authorities to start the process for receipt of claims and objections regarding entries in the NRC. The process is to begin on Oct 25 and claimants can tentatively rely only on 10 documents. The Centre, Assam and other stakeholders had, however, argued for the inclusion of additional documents. The final draft of the NRC, published on July 30, had excluded 4 million names.
During the hearing , the bench of CJI Ranjan Gogoi and justice RF Nariman referred to Hajela’s report that said it would be “inexpedient” to allow claims for inclusion in the NRC on the basis of the five additional documents as sought by the Centre and others.
“At this stage, we are of the view that all the stakeholders... should be allowed to file their objections to the stand taken by Hajela in his aforesaid report dated Oct 4, 2018, a copy whereof would be furnished by the Registry of this Court to the following stakeholders in the next two days. The written objections of the aforesaid stakeholders will be brought on record on or before 30th Oct, 2018. The matter will be heard on 1st November, 2018,” Gogoi recorded in the order.
The court even asked Hajela to give a PowerPoint presentation on the manner in which he had proceeded to prepare the manual and the computer family tree for the purposes of deciding the inclusion of names in the draft NRC.