GUWAHATI, April 5 � The Centre will soon start a probe into an allegation of tampering of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) of 1951 by some unscrupulous persons during the process of updating it. One such incident has already come to light and the possibility of more such incidents in different parts of the State cannot be ruled out.
Talking to The Assam Tribune, Joint Secretary (North East) of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), Sambhu Singh, said that the MHA has recently received a complaint that the NRC of Kamrup district was tampered with and some new names were added to the 1951 document. He said that as per the allegation, one clerk illegally included a few names in the NRC in clear violation of the rules.
Singh said that a team of the MHA would be sent to Assam soon for a thorough probe into the incident. He admitted that it would not be possible to check the entire NRC of 1951 to assess whether any such incident took place in other parts of the State. However, he said that a sample survey can be carried out and if any more irregularity is found, the Deputy Commissioners and other officers involved with the process of updating the NRC would be asked to carry out a detailed check to ascertain that no such malpractice happened.
The MHA official said that the Centre is keen on correct updating of the NRC so that photo identity cards can be issued to genuine Indian citizens on the basis of it. He said that the Centre has been providing funds as per the requirement and is closely monitoring the process of updating the NRC. While the Supreme Court is also monitoring the process of updating the NRC, the Centre is expecting that the process would be completed within the stipulated time frame.
It may be mentioned here that the process of updating the NRC has started all over Assam with the Government setting up 2500 NRC Seva Kendras, where the computerized version of all available data of the 1951 NRC and the electoral rolls up to the midnight of March 24, 1971 are made available. Any person can check his or her legacy data in the Seva Kendras. The process of distribution of application forms will start later this month and it would have to be submitted by July. The next step would be publication of draft NRC and receipt of claims and objections, followed by the publication of the final updated NRC.
The Government of India is planning to provide photo identity cards to all those whose names will be included in the updated NRC.