Assam govt cautious before NRC release

Assam govt cautious before NRC releaseGUWAHATI: Authorities in Assam are monitoring the internal security situation and taking measures to avoid any untoward incident in the run-up to the release of the draft National Register of Citizens (NRC) on June 30, Director General of Police Kuladhar Saikia said here.

“We are closely monitoring the situation and holding high-level meetings and if the situation demands, we will seek additional forces from the Centre before the release of the NRC,” Saikia told reporters here.

The NRC, first prepared in 1951, is being updated in Assam under the supervision of the Supreme Court to weed out illegal migrants. The first draft of the updated version was published on December 31.

A team of senior government and police officials, led by Chief Secretary T Y Das, has been holding meetings at the district level and the third such meeting was held at Darrang where the law and order situation of three districts was reviewed, he said.

The feedback regarding the law and order situation from the districts has so far been positive and we are hopeful that there will be no untoward incidents. We are working in a coordinated manner with different agencies and there has been no major issues so far,” the DGP added.

Officers were monitoring daily changes at the ground level and if the need for additional forces was felt, the situation would be dealt with accordingly, he said.

The meeting at Darrang, attended by the chief secretary, the DGP and others reviewed the law and order situation of Darrang, Udalguri and Sonitpur districts.

The high level team will visit the remaining districts of Assam in near future before publication of the NRC.

The part draft of the NRC was published at midnight on December 31 where names of 1.9 crore people out of the 3.29 crore applicants were incorporated.

The massive exercise aimed at identifying illegal immigrants in the state bordering Bangladesh is being carried out following a decision in 2005 after a series of meetings between the central and state governments and the influential All Assam Students’ Union (AASU).

Assam, which faced influx of people from Bangladesh since the early 20th century, is the only state having an NRC, first prepared in 1951.

The exercise started in 2005 under the then Congress regime and it got a major push after the BJP came to power in the state in 2016 with illegal immigration from Bangladesh as a poll plank. PTI

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