Bharatiya Janata Party’s General Secretary Ram Madhav on Monday said people excluded from the final list of the National Register of Citizens in Assam will be disenfranchised and deported, PTI reported.

“Three steps will be taken after NRC,” Madhav said at a seminar on ‘NRC: Defending the Borders, Securing the Culture’ in Delhi. “Detect, delete [and] deport. NRC will ensure detection of illegal immigrants. Next step will be disenfranchise – deletion of names of illegal immigrants from voters list [and] deprive them from govt [government] benefits. Third stage will be deportation.”

Madhav said no other country tolerates undocumented migrants, but India has become a “dharamshala for illegal immigrants due to political considerations”.

Madhav said the country’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru realised the enormity of the problem of undocumented migrants in Assam and enacted a state-specific law in the 1950s to expel foreigners. “Nehru’s great-grandson should read the history and extend support to detect and deport illegal immigrants from Assam,” he said, referring to Rahul Gandhi.

Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, who belongs to the BJP, said genuine Indian citizens will get adequate opportunities to prove their citizenship and include their names in the final list of the NRC. He has suggested that the NRC be implemented in all states.

“This is a document which can protect all Indians,” PTI quoted Sonowal as saying. “Those who will be excluded from the NRC in Assam can go to other states. So we will have to take a strong step.”

The final draft

The final draft of Assam’s National Register of Citizens was published on July 30 leaving out nearly 40 lakh people, even some MLAs and a former chief minister.

The stated aim of the counting exercise is to separate genuine Indian citizens whom the State refers to as “illegal migrants” who might be living in the state. According to the terms of the exercise, anyone who could not prove that they or their ancestors had entered Assam before midnight on March 24, 1971, would be declared a foreigner.

Launched in 2015, it involved processing the applications of 3.29 crore people who hoped to be included in the register. Over the course of three years, the mammoth exercise has been through several controversies, including allegations of bias against certain communities.