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Work on NRC update in Assam still remains: Union home secretary

The Supreme Court had directed that the first draft of the updated National Register of Citizens is to be made public at midnight on December 31.

india Updated: Dec 22, 2017 18:23 IST
Utpal Parashar
Utpal Parashar
Hindustan Times, Guwahati
National Register of Citizens,NRC,NRC update
Union home secretary Rajiv Gauba addresses the media on the National Register of Citizens (NRC ) at the Assam Administrative Staff College in Guwahati on Friday.(PTI)

With less than 10 days left for the deadline to publish the first draft of the updated National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Assam, union home secretary Rajiv Gauba said on Friday that work on the “mammoth exercise” still remains incomplete.

As per directions of the Supreme Court, the first draft of the updated NRC is to be made public at midnight on December 31.

“Very substantial work has been completed already, but very significant amount of work still needs to be done,” Gauba told journalists here after reviewing progress of the work.

As per provisions of the Assam Accord of 1985, the NRC is being updated after a gap of over six decades, only in Assam, with the view to weed out illegal immigrants especially from Bangladesh.

“The magnitude of the work is evident from the fact that there are 3.28 crore individuals involved, there were about 68 lakh applications and there were over 6 crore documents that need to be verified,” Gauba said.

On December 31, only a part draft of the updated NRC will be made public. The entire draft will be published at a later date after verifying documents of all applicants.

Persons who can prove links with family members whose names appeared in the 1951 NRC or subsequent electoral rolls till March 25, 1971 will be included in the updated NRC.

Any claims or objections will be taken up only after the complete draft NRC is made public. The final NRC would be published after all such claims are settled.

“Entire machinery is working in tandem to complete the exercise within deadline. Those whose names don’t appear in the first draft needn’t get unduly worried as there will be opportunities for subsequent verification,” he said.

With the authorities racing to meet the deadline to release the draft, there are fears that many names, especially of those belonging to minority community, may get left out. There are apprehensions of violence as well.

Gauba took part in a meeting of the strategy group of the unified command comprising military, paramilitary and state police force to review security situation ahead of the publication of the first draft.

“I took stock of the security scenario. Our endeavour is ensure there will be no fallout (once the draft NRC is made public),” he said.

The home secretary said barring few incidents, the overall security scenario in Assam and northeast has improved in the past 15 years.

First Published: Dec 22, 2017 18:21 IST