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NRC Coordinator acting unilaterally, says State govt

By STAFF REPORTER
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GUWAHATI, Aug 1 - The State government today accused the NRC State Coordinator Prateek Hajela of acting unilaterally and alleged that he is not sharing the relevant information and details of the status of the ongoing update process of the citizen document with the government.

Replying to two Zero Hour notices in the Assembly, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Chandra Mohan Patowary said the percentage of non-inclusion of applicants in the draft NRC is higher in districts like Karbi Anglong, Tinsukia and West Karbi Anglong, which are predominantly populated by indigenous communities, as compared to districts bordering Bangladesh like Dhubri and South Salmara-Mankachar, where �abnormal� population growth was noticed in the last census.

One of the notices was given by BJP legislators Debananda Hazarika, Numal Momin and Shiladitya Dev, who cited a report published in the July 25 issue of The Assam Tribune titled �No policy yet on status of persons not figuring in NRC�.

�The NRC State Coordinator submits the information to the Supreme Court. But he does not share information with the State government,� Patowary said.

He said that when the Centre and the Assam government moved the Supreme Court seeking reverification of 20 per cent names included in the draft NRC, Hajela told the apex court that �incidental verification� of 27 per cent of the names has already been carried out during the process of claims and objections.

�However, there was no advertisement or public notice or awareness campaign in the run-up to the incidental verification. No information was provided,� the minister said.

He added that a study of the reports submitted by the State Coordinator in the apex court leads one to conclude that there has been large scale and rampant misuse of legacy data which resulted in the rate of non-inclusion of applicants being lower in districts bordering Bangladesh.

Patowary said it is a matter of concern that the rate of non-inclusion is higher in other districts as compared to those located near the Bangladesh border.

He said the Supreme Court had directed the NRC authorities to share details of the 3.80 lakh persons, who did not file claims despite their names not figuring in the draft document. �But the State Coordinator did not share the data with us,� he added.

He said many people, including senior leaders of the ruling party like Minister of State Pijush Hazarika and MLA Gurujyoti Das, have expressed concern over the entire matter as well as about the State NRC Coordinator�s style of functioning.

Sharing details with the House, Patowary said that 40,07,717 persons or 12.15 per cent of the applicants have been left out of the draft NRC. Among the districts, the percentage of non-inclusion is highest in Hojai (32.99 per cent), followed by Darrang (30.90 per cent), Bongaigaon (22.51 per cent), Kamrup Metro (17.89 per cent), Sonitpur (16.71 per cent), Baksa (15.59 per cent), West Karbi Anglong (15.47 per cent), Morigaon (15.04 per cent), Udalguri (14.74 per cent), Karbi Anglong (14.31 per cent), Nagaon (14.12 per cent), Barpeta (13.40 per cent), Tinsukia (13.25 per cent), Cachar (12.91 per cent), Biswanath (11.64 per cent), Goalpara (10.34 per cent), Dhemaji (9.74 per cent), Lakhimpur (9.64 per cent), Dhubri (8.26 per cent), Hailakandi (8.04 per cent), Chirang (7.91 per cent), Karimganj (7.67 per cent), South Salmara-Mankachar (7.22 per cent), Dibrugarh (6.88 per cent), Golaghat (6.81 per cent), Dima Hasao (6.75 per cent), Kokrajhar (6.62 per cent), Kamrup (5.32 per cent), Sivasagar (5.06 per cent), Nalbari (4.78 per cent), Jorhat (4.66 per cent), Charaideo (2.88 per cent) and Majuli (1.62 per cent).

Patowary said the State and the Centre are both committed to having an error-free NRC and that is why they had submitted affidavits in the apex court seeking reverification of 20 per cent names included in the draft NRC as discrepancies were noticed in the update process.

�If there are any untoward incidents in the near future on account of indigenous people being deprived in the NRC update process, the State Coordinator will not take responsibility. The State government will have to handle the situation and take responsibility,� he said.

The minister added that as per directions of the apex court 200 additional foreigners tribunals will be made operational from September 1 in the State post publication of the final NRC.

Earlier, raising the issue, Hazarika said there have been reports about names of many illegal immigrants getting into the draft NRC, while those of many genuine Indian citizens have allegedly been left out. �The State Coordinator has kept the government in dark,� he said.

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NRC Coordinator acting unilaterally, says State govt

GUWAHATI, Aug 1 - The State government today accused the NRC State Coordinator Prateek Hajela of acting unilaterally and alleged that he is not sharing the relevant information and details of the status of the ongoing update process of the citizen document with the government.

Replying to two Zero Hour notices in the Assembly, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Chandra Mohan Patowary said the percentage of non-inclusion of applicants in the draft NRC is higher in districts like Karbi Anglong, Tinsukia and West Karbi Anglong, which are predominantly populated by indigenous communities, as compared to districts bordering Bangladesh like Dhubri and South Salmara-Mankachar, where �abnormal� population growth was noticed in the last census.

One of the notices was given by BJP legislators Debananda Hazarika, Numal Momin and Shiladitya Dev, who cited a report published in the July 25 issue of The Assam Tribune titled �No policy yet on status of persons not figuring in NRC�.

�The NRC State Coordinator submits the information to the Supreme Court. But he does not share information with the State government,� Patowary said.

He said that when the Centre and the Assam government moved the Supreme Court seeking reverification of 20 per cent names included in the draft NRC, Hajela told the apex court that �incidental verification� of 27 per cent of the names has already been carried out during the process of claims and objections.

�However, there was no advertisement or public notice or awareness campaign in the run-up to the incidental verification. No information was provided,� the minister said.

He added that a study of the reports submitted by the State Coordinator in the apex court leads one to conclude that there has been large scale and rampant misuse of legacy data which resulted in the rate of non-inclusion of applicants being lower in districts bordering Bangladesh.

Patowary said it is a matter of concern that the rate of non-inclusion is higher in other districts as compared to those located near the Bangladesh border.

He said the Supreme Court had directed the NRC authorities to share details of the 3.80 lakh persons, who did not file claims despite their names not figuring in the draft document. �But the State Coordinator did not share the data with us,� he added.

He said many people, including senior leaders of the ruling party like Minister of State Pijush Hazarika and MLA Gurujyoti Das, have expressed concern over the entire matter as well as about the State NRC Coordinator�s style of functioning.

Sharing details with the House, Patowary said that 40,07,717 persons or 12.15 per cent of the applicants have been left out of the draft NRC. Among the districts, the percentage of non-inclusion is highest in Hojai (32.99 per cent), followed by Darrang (30.90 per cent), Bongaigaon (22.51 per cent), Kamrup Metro (17.89 per cent), Sonitpur (16.71 per cent), Baksa (15.59 per cent), West Karbi Anglong (15.47 per cent), Morigaon (15.04 per cent), Udalguri (14.74 per cent), Karbi Anglong (14.31 per cent), Nagaon (14.12 per cent), Barpeta (13.40 per cent), Tinsukia (13.25 per cent), Cachar (12.91 per cent), Biswanath (11.64 per cent), Goalpara (10.34 per cent), Dhemaji (9.74 per cent), Lakhimpur (9.64 per cent), Dhubri (8.26 per cent), Hailakandi (8.04 per cent), Chirang (7.91 per cent), Karimganj (7.67 per cent), South Salmara-Mankachar (7.22 per cent), Dibrugarh (6.88 per cent), Golaghat (6.81 per cent), Dima Hasao (6.75 per cent), Kokrajhar (6.62 per cent), Kamrup (5.32 per cent), Sivasagar (5.06 per cent), Nalbari (4.78 per cent), Jorhat (4.66 per cent), Charaideo (2.88 per cent) and Majuli (1.62 per cent).

Patowary said the State and the Centre are both committed to having an error-free NRC and that is why they had submitted affidavits in the apex court seeking reverification of 20 per cent names included in the draft NRC as discrepancies were noticed in the update process.

�If there are any untoward incidents in the near future on account of indigenous people being deprived in the NRC update process, the State Coordinator will not take responsibility. The State government will have to handle the situation and take responsibility,� he said.

The minister added that as per directions of the apex court 200 additional foreigners tribunals will be made operational from September 1 in the State post publication of the final NRC.

Earlier, raising the issue, Hazarika said there have been reports about names of many illegal immigrants getting into the draft NRC, while those of many genuine Indian citizens have allegedly been left out. �The State Coordinator has kept the government in dark,� he said.

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