The Supreme Court has made it clear that the deadline for preparing the final report of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) in the State of Assam shall be completed by the given deadline of July 31, 2019. The Apex court has asked the authorities to chalk out a plan so that the exercise of the NRC is not affected due to the upcoming general elections.
To make sure that everything is taken care of and there is no shortage of officials, the Chief Secretary of Assam government, Election Commission and the NRC coordinator have been asked by the Supreme Court to hold a meeting to decide how the officials will be accommodated for the two exercises.
The Court has directed the Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, who is appearing for the State of Assam, to ensure that the meeting is held within seven days. The bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice R F Nariman has asked to be informed of the outcome of the said meeting on the next hearing of the case which is scheduled for February 5.
The NRC is being updated under the direct monitoring of the Supreme Court. The first draft of the NRC was published on during the intervening night of December 31, 2017, containing 1.9 crore names. The second draft was released on July 30, 2018, which had 2.9 crore names.
The Apex court had last year extended the deadline for filing claims and objections from December 15, 2018, to December 31, 2018, on the request of Assam government.
The objective of updating the NRC in the state is to identify people living in the state illegally. In this process, the NRC of 1951 is being updated. According to special provision for Assam under the Citizenship Act, 1955, any person who came to the state before 25 March 1971 will be granted citizenship. Accordingly, only those people’s names are to be included in the final NRC who can prove that they or their earlier generations were residents of the state prior to that date.