AGARTALA, Oct 9 - The Supreme Court notice on National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Tripura has created ripples in the political spectrum here as most of the Bengali people came to the border state after 1947.
Following a writ petition filed by Tripura People�s Front (TPF) president Patal Kanya Jamatia, a three-judge bench of the apex court headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi on Monday issued notice to the Centre, Election Commission of India and the state government asking them to reply on the issue.
In the petition, the TPF president has sought a ruling on NRC in Tripura with the cut-off year 1947. A vast area of Bangladesh was part of Tripura kingdom even after India�s independence. Therefore, it will not be wise to say all the Bengalis, who have come over here from Bangladesh, are foreigners or infiltrators. Besides, there is the historic Indira-Mujib pact under which it was mandated that those who left Bangladesh before March 24, 1971 would be treated as Indians. This historic agreement was passed by the Parliament.
When contacted, Tripura Advocate General Arun Kanti Bhowmik on Tuesday said the apex court�s directive has come to the government knowledge but a copy of the notice is yet to be received. �The government will reply on the SC notice with the base year of Indira-Mujib agreement, i.e. March 24, 1971. Besides, the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 is still lying with the Parliament,� he said.
Bhowmik further pointed out that the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill has proposed that those minority people who have come to India from the neighbouring countries will get Indian citizenship.
CPI(M) MP Jitendra Chowdhury also backed NRC in Tripura provided it is prepared as per the law. �The NRC should not be undertaken on the basis of caste, creed or religion,� he said.
Congress spokesman Harekrishna Bhowmik said the party wants the NRC ball be allowed to roll on the basis of the Indira-Mujib agreement.
During the India Today conclave held in Kolkata recently, Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb said if the ongoing NRC process (in Assam) emerges successful, then the government could think over NRC in Tripura.
Tribal-based Indigenous National Party of Tripura (INPT) is persistently advocating for NRC in Tripura, but with the cut-off year 1951. �We have met Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh in Delhi recently and made our demand clear on NRC. Since the matter has already gone to the SC, it will not be good to discuss much on it,� said Bijoy Kumar Hrangkhawl, president of the INPT.