GUWAHATI, Sept 10 - Coming out strongly against State National Register of Citizens (NRC) Coordinator Prateek Hajela�s recent report to the Supreme Court suggesting that those left out of the draft NRC could submit any one of the 10 out of a total 15 documents in List-A of the Centre�s draft Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for claims and objections, while dispensing with the remaining five documents, the ruling BJP today called upon the State government to file an affidavit against the proposal in the apex court.
Addressing a press conference here today, State BJP president Ranjeet Kumar Dass said that names of lakhs of Indian citizens are missing from the draft NRC.
He added that the opinion put forward by Hajela has complicated the situation and which, if accepted, would result in lakhs of genuine Indian citizens getting left out of the final NRC.
�The State NRC Coordinator has submitted his report to the Supreme Court, seeking to delete five of the documents used earlier, keeping the people in dark. All 15 documents were used to prepare the draft NRC. By taking the latest position, Hajela has only resorted to self-contradiction. It seems that there is an attempt to create confusion. It will be unfortunate if people, who are deemed as Indians under provisions of the Assam Accord, are now left out of the NRC. Who gave Hajela the authority to make such a suggestion? Did he discuss the issue with the stakeholders before giving his opinion to the apex court?� said Dass.
He added, �We want to know why he did that. If there was any issue regarding the five documents which are sought to be dispensed with, why did the NRC State Coordinator not raise the point before the draft document was published. One cannot change the rules of the game at half-time.�
Terming the Assam Accord as the soul of India, Dass said that successive governments failed to solve the problem of illegal immigrants.
The State BJP president alleged that names of lakhs of genuine Indian citizens did not find a place in the complete draft NRC was published on July 30.
�Surprisingly, names of lakhs of genuine Indian citizens did not find a place in the draft. Since day one, the BJP was hopeful that not even a single genuine Indian citizen, including Indian Gorkhas, Indian Bengalis, Hindi-speaking people and members of the indigenous communities would be left out of the NRC. However, after conducting research and studying the details, we have found that the picture that has emerged in contrary to what we were expecting and hoping for,� said Dass.
He said the State BJP leaders have discussed the entire issue with the party�s central leadership during the two-day National Executive Meeting of the saffron party held in New Delhi on September 8-9.
�We call upon the State government to submit an affidavit to the Supreme Court before September 19, which is the next date of hearing of the NRC matter, against the suggestion given by Hajela,� said Dass.
The BJP believes that if the five documents � 1951 NRC, pre-1971 voters� lists, refugee certificates, citizenship documents and ration cards � are dispensed with, then lakhs of genuine Indian citizens will find it difficult to get their names included in the final NRC.
The State BJP will also submit a memorandum in this regard to the Union Home Minister and the State NRC Coordinator in this regard.
Regarding doubts expressed by certain quarters that Hajela has given his opinion to the apex court on directions of Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, Dass refuted such a suggestion.
�The entire issue was discussed in-depth during our party�s National Executive. The chief minister has categorically stated that Hajela has never discussed the matter with him,� said the BJP leader.
Asked on what basis the BJP is claiming that lakhs of Indian citizens have been left out of the draft NRC, Dass handed over a list containing names of people who he claims are genuine and bona fide citizens whose names do not figure in draft document.
He added that the BJP National Executive has reiterated the party�s commitment to the NRC update process.
�BJP�s views are clear. We want each and every genuine Indian citizen�s name in the NRC, while at the same time no foreigner should be in the list,� Dass said, adding that some forces are trying to sow confusion in the minds of the people because �they are apprehensive of the agenda of development followed by our government�.
Asked about the exact number of Indian citizens who may have been left out of the draft NRC, he refused to speculate on the figure.