GUWAHATI, Oct 30 - The persons involved in spreading rumours and misinformation campaign on the issue of updating the National Register of Citizens (NRC) are working against the interest of the nation, said Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal. He also asserted that the government is committed to provide all required assistance to ensure that a correct NRC is prepared in Assam.
Talking to The Assam Tribune, the Chief Minister said that some vested interest circles are trying to create confusion among the people by launching a misinformation campaign. �Such people are working against the interest of the nation for their personal gains. Such people do not want peace and progress of Assam,� he added. He also revealed that deputy commissioners and superintendents of police of all the districts have been directed to remain alert and take action against any person found to be spreading rumours to create confusion and misunderstanding among the people.
Reiterating the fact that no genuine Indian citizen should feel apprehensive, Sonowal said the NRC would protect the interests of genuine Indian nationals. There is no question of differentiating people in religious or linguistic lines and the names of all Indian citizens living in Assam will be included in the NRC, he said. He also said that the officials involved in the process are taking updating of the NRC as a �national duty� and called upon all sections of people to cooperate with the process. He said that on its part, the State government is extending all necessary help to the Registrar General of India (RGI) as per the directive of the Supreme Court.
Sonowal pointed out that even if the name of any genuine Indian national is left out of the draft NRC, he or she would have ample opportunity as per the provisions of the law to file claims and objections and with the Supreme Court closely monitoring the process, there is no reason for any Indian citizen to feel apprehensive.
Replying to a question on whether the State government is ready to deal with any possible law and order problem following the publication of the draft NRC, Sonowal expressed confidence that the government would be able to deal with any such situation �with the support of the people of the State.� He said that people of both the Brahmaputra and Barak valleys cooperated with the process of updating the NRC and the government machinery is also keeping a close watch on the situation. Only a handful of people are trying to create trouble for their narrow personal interests and the government would be able to deal with such elements, he added.
The publication of the draft NRC may pose another challenge for the government as it is expected that the foreigners living in the State would be identified once the citizenship document is published. Asked whether the government has chalked out any plan to deal with the persons who are not found to be Indian citizens after the publication of the draft NRC, Sonowal said the first priority of the government is to protect the interest of the genuine Indian citizens living in Assam. �The publication of the NRC will help in protecting the interests of the Indian citizens and dealing with those identified as foreigners will be decided in the next phase,� he said, admitting that the government would have to chalk out the future course of action on dealing with those identified as foreigners after the publication of the NRC.