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SC asks stakeholders to respond to Hajela�s suggestions

By Spl Correspondent
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NEW DELHI, Oct 23 - The National Register of Citizens (NRC) State coordinator Prateek Hajela has pleaded before the Supreme Court that the five documents should not be allowed to be used for filing claims for inclusion of names in the NRC.

Resuming hearing on the NRC case today, a Bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice Rohinton Fali Nariman has now asked all stakeholders, including the Centre and Assam government to respond to Hajela�s suggestions.

The Bench for now declined the Centre�s plea for extending time for filing claims for inclusion of names in the NRC, since the process started on September 25 and only one lakh people filed the claims.

The court also directed Hajela, who submitted two reports � one confidential in a sealed cover and the other in which he expressed his misgivings on permitting five identity documents to rely upon for claiming inclusion in the NRC.

The Supreme Court also directed Hajela to make a powerpoint presentation before the officials of the Centre and State government in the presence of Attorney General KK Venugopal, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta and other stakeholders so that it gives a �clarity regarding his objections.�

The stakeholders will then have to submit their response on Hajela�s suggestions before October 30. The case will now be heard on November 1. The other stakeholders include the All Assam Students Union, All Assam Minority Students Union, Jamiat-Ulama-i-Hind, Assam Sanmilita Mahasangha, NDFB(P), Indigenous Tribal Peoples Federation and the Joint Action Committee for Bengali Refugees.

The Supreme Court, meanwhile, advised the Central Government and Assam Government to �behave like a state and not an individual�. The comments came when the Centre and Assam government insisted on inclusion of five documents for filing claims and objections.

Hajela in his report said that these five documents cannot be permitted as their �introduction now will create problems�.

Hajela had earlier named ten of the 15 documents as valid documents for inclusion of names in the NRC. The five documents include extract of the NRC of 1951; extract/certified copy of electoral rolls up to midnight of March 24, 1971; refugee registration certificate issued up to March 24, 1971; and ration cards issued by competent authority with official seal and signature up to March 24, 1971 (midnight).

During the last hearing, the Supreme Court had allowed the filing of claims and objections based on ten documents. The Supreme Court had earlier said claimants can rely on any one or more of the 10 additional documents, of a total of 15.

However, it had kept the issue of reliance on five documents open and had asked the NRC State Coordinator to give his views on the permissibility of relying on those five documents. Hajela has now stated that the five documents should not be used.

As Solicitor General Tushar Mehta appearing for the Assam government urged the court that those who have already relied on these five documents should not be allowed to use them again but those who had not relied on them in the first instance should be permitted.

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SC asks stakeholders to respond to Hajela�s suggestions

NEW DELHI, Oct 23 - The National Register of Citizens (NRC) State coordinator Prateek Hajela has pleaded before the Supreme Court that the five documents should not be allowed to be used for filing claims for inclusion of names in the NRC.

Resuming hearing on the NRC case today, a Bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice Rohinton Fali Nariman has now asked all stakeholders, including the Centre and Assam government to respond to Hajela�s suggestions.

The Bench for now declined the Centre�s plea for extending time for filing claims for inclusion of names in the NRC, since the process started on September 25 and only one lakh people filed the claims.

The court also directed Hajela, who submitted two reports � one confidential in a sealed cover and the other in which he expressed his misgivings on permitting five identity documents to rely upon for claiming inclusion in the NRC.

The Supreme Court also directed Hajela to make a powerpoint presentation before the officials of the Centre and State government in the presence of Attorney General KK Venugopal, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta and other stakeholders so that it gives a �clarity regarding his objections.�

The stakeholders will then have to submit their response on Hajela�s suggestions before October 30. The case will now be heard on November 1. The other stakeholders include the All Assam Students Union, All Assam Minority Students Union, Jamiat-Ulama-i-Hind, Assam Sanmilita Mahasangha, NDFB(P), Indigenous Tribal Peoples Federation and the Joint Action Committee for Bengali Refugees.

The Supreme Court, meanwhile, advised the Central Government and Assam Government to �behave like a state and not an individual�. The comments came when the Centre and Assam government insisted on inclusion of five documents for filing claims and objections.

Hajela in his report said that these five documents cannot be permitted as their �introduction now will create problems�.

Hajela had earlier named ten of the 15 documents as valid documents for inclusion of names in the NRC. The five documents include extract of the NRC of 1951; extract/certified copy of electoral rolls up to midnight of March 24, 1971; refugee registration certificate issued up to March 24, 1971; and ration cards issued by competent authority with official seal and signature up to March 24, 1971 (midnight).

During the last hearing, the Supreme Court had allowed the filing of claims and objections based on ten documents. The Supreme Court had earlier said claimants can rely on any one or more of the 10 additional documents, of a total of 15.

However, it had kept the issue of reliance on five documents open and had asked the NRC State Coordinator to give his views on the permissibility of relying on those five documents. Hajela has now stated that the five documents should not be used.

As Solicitor General Tushar Mehta appearing for the Assam government urged the court that those who have already relied on these five documents should not be allowed to use them again but those who had not relied on them in the first instance should be permitted.

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