- Those left out of Assam new citizen's list can file claims by December 15
- Over 40 lakh people were left out of the Assam NRC
- NRC aims to determine genuine citizens in view of widespread migration
The Supreme Court today extended the deadline for filing claims and objections of people not included in the final draft of the new citizen's list in Assam to December 15. A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi also permitted candidates to produce five more documents previously disallowed by the National Register of Citizens (NRC) coordinator, rejecting his contention that they can be easily forged.
The documents are the NRC of 1951; names in electoral rolls up to March 24, 1971; citizenship certificates and refugee registration certificates; certified copies of the pre-1971 electoral roll (particularly those issued from Tripura); and ration cards.
Over 40 lakh people were left out of the Assam NRC -- which aims to determine genuine citizens while weeding out illegal immigrants from neighbouring countries -- when it was published on June 30. However, they were given the option of filing fresh claims.
NRC coordinator Prateek Hajela had earlier said that that those seeking inclusion into the list can submit only 10 of the original 15 "list A" documents. However, the Supreme Court held that the likelihood of forgery couldn't possibly be grounds for rejecting the five documents. "Your view that it is better to exclude a genuine citizen than to include an ineligible person is not acceptable. It should be the other way round," the bench told Mr Hajela.
The Supreme Court bench had earlier asked claimants to file their claims and objections within a period of 60 days, starting September 25. But now, with the extension of the deadline, the court has set January 15, 2019, as the last date for the authorities to issue its notice. The verification exercise will begin on February 1 next year.