Foreigners Tribunals, the quasi-judicial bodies that will decide on the citizenship status of individuals who do not figure in the final list of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Assam – will have to come up with a final decision within four months, rules framed by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) said.The final list of the NRC – one of the key demands of the 1985 Assam Accord that ended decades of insurgency in the north-eastern state and proposed a framework to weed out illegal immigrants - will be released on July 31.At present, there are 100 tribunals, which deal with the cases of people suspected to be illegal immigrants by the border organisation of the Assam Police or marked D (doubtful voter) in electoral rolls. The process of appearing before such a tribunal, receiving a final verdict, and appeal can continue for more than a decade.Exercising its powers conferred by the Foreigners Act, 1946, the MHA order said a person whose name is not part of the final list of the NRC, currently being updated in Assam, can approach any such tribunal with a certified copy of the rejection order received from the NRC authorities along with the grounds for appeal. “The final order of the tribunal containing its opinion shall be given within a period of one hundred and twenty days from the date of production of the records,” the MHA order added.The first draft of the NRC was published on July 30, 2018, and about four million people in Assam were excluded from it. The process is being monitored by the Supreme Court but activists have complained of irregularities and bias against Bengali-speaking Muslims. According to the latest MHA order, the appellant may appear either in person or through a legal practitioner or a relation authorised by the appellant in writing, subject to the acceptance of such representation by the tribunal.