GUWAHATI: AIUDF MLA Aminul Islam, vehemently opposing 1951 as the National Register of Citizens (NRC) cut-off date, said that the Assam government should stop highlighting such "pointless" issues and instead focus on "development."
Islam said that he is "shocked" at the present government's apparent attempt to fix 1951 as the cut-off date for citizenship in Assam.
"We are surprised at this government's assertion of setting 1951 as the cut-off date. This will create another debate and we suspect that they might turn their backs towards developmental activities. The chief minister's statement makes it clear that the government will not make development-oriented policies," Islam fumed to media persons outside the Assembly.
Islam also insinuated that the current government intends to stir the pot with a number of "pointless" and divisive stands.
He also appealed to the government to "accept" the final draft of the NRC and focus its energies on developmental activities.
After being elected as the chief minister of Assam, Himanta Biswa Sarma said his government will be approaching the Supreme Court again for a reverification of the National Citizenship Register (NRC) — up to 20% of entries in areas bordering Bangladesh and 10% in interior areas of Assam.
Speaking to a newspaper, Sarma said this was something the previous BJP government, in which he was Health and Finance Minister, had been saying for some time. “If the NRC checks out, then we shall do nothing, but if there are discrepancies we will ask for the Supreme Court’s guidance. We have been saying this for a while, and we stand by this,” he has been quoted as saying.
In case of Assam, the cut off date for identification of an Indian citizen is 1971. Publication of the final list of NRC was expected to end the decades-old issue of illegal immigrants in Assam, but that didn’t happen.
Now several indigenous groups, student organizations, religious and literary bodies, and NGOs want the NRC to have 1951 as the cut-off date to detect foreigners instead March 24, 1971.
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