GUWAHATI, June 24 - As the date for publication of the final draft of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) is drawing closer, some organizations and individuals have started raising questions on the accuracy of the NRC. But the State Coordinator of the NRC, Prateek Hajela has expressed confidence on the accuracy of the NRC because of the system that was put into place to update the citizenship document. He also asserted that wrong figures have been quoted about the numbers of applicants, whose names would not be included in the NRC.
Talking to The Assam Tribune, Hajela said that the whole system of updating the NRC was very transparent and it was devised according to the law. He admitted that the system of family tree verification was crucial in detecting those who tried to get names included in the NRC with false or forged documents. He pointed out that enough legal safeguards have been given to genuine Indian citizens and even if name of any Indian citizen is left out from the draft, he or she would have enough opportunity to file claims and objections.
The NRC Coordinator pointed out that as the whole process of updating the NRC is closely monitored by the Supreme Court, if anyone has any grievance against the system, he or she can approach the court seeking justice. He pointed out that one individual had approached the High Court against the notification regarding inclusion of names of family members of declared foreigners in the NRC. But the petition was dismissed by the Court, which proved that there was nothing wrong in the notification. But unfortunately, some individuals gave statements against the notification even when the matter was before the Court.
Replying to a question on the figures quoted by different organizations and individuals on the names of the applicants who would not be included in the NRC, Hajela said that all the figures are only assumptions. He said that the process of compilation of the figures is yet to be completed and no one should try to create confusion among the people by quoting speculative figures.
Hajela said that from the beginning, the entire process of updating the NRC was carried out in a transparent manner as per the provisions of the law. The legacy data of the applicants was digitized and made public, while, the hearings were carried out openly. �There was nothing secret in the process. More than one crore people appeared in the hearings during the process of verification of the family trees and certificates issued by the panchayat secretaries to the married women. People even travelled to different districts and even states to appear in the hearings, which were held in open view of the people. This proved that the people have faith on the system, or else, such a large number of people would not have turned up for the hearings,� he added.
It may be mentioned here that 3.29 crore people applied for inclusion of names in the NRC and names of around 1.90 crore people were included in the first draft. The final draft was supposed to be published on June 30, but it may be delayed by a few days as floods in several districts affected the process.