The Bharatiya Janata Party-led Assam government on Thursday said it will make public the district-wise figures of Bengali Hindus excluded from the final National Register of Citizens list in the current Assembly session, PTI reported. The Assam government had earlier urged the Centre to reject the final NRC list.
BJP leader Himanta Biswa Sarma, who is the finance minister of Assam, said that the Comptroller and Auditor General of India has found “huge irregularities” in the updation process of the NRC in the state three years ago. “We will give the figure of those Hindu Bengali people applying [in Foreigners Tribunals after exclusion in the NRC] in different districts during the ongoing session of the Assembly,” Sarma told the media. “We could not give that data earlier as NRC was not prepared.”
The winter session of the Assam Assembly began on Thursday, and will end on December 6. The final NRC list, published on August 31, excluded 19 lakh people, or 6% of the state’s population. BJP leaders in Assam have alleged that a large number of Bengali Hindus have been excluded.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah had announced in the Rajya Sabha on November 20 that the NRC updation process will be carried out afresh in Assam. He also said that a nationwide NRC will be implemented. The same day, Sarma said the Assam government had requested Shah to dismiss the final NRC list in its present form.
Sarma had said that if a nationwide NRC exercise is not carried out, suspected undocumented immigrants in Assam at present can move to another part of India. Sarma also criticised former NRC State Coordinator Prateek Hajela. The state government was “bearing the brunt because of one individual”, he told reporters. The Supreme Court, which monitored the NRC process, transferred Hajela to Madhya Pradesh in October.
Sarma also said on Thursday that only the All India United Democratic Front and some Congress MLAs, and not the people of Assam, had demanded that the NRC should not be cancelled. On the first day of the winter session of the Assam Assembly, Congress MLAs and the AIUDF members protested against the state government’s move to dismiss the NRC.