SC says NRC process will go on, but checks coercive action

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The attack on the government by Banerjee and several opposition parties came, a day after names of over 4 million people in Assam were excluded from the draft NRC list, prepared following a long-drawn process to identify illegal Bangladeshis living in the state. The main issue seems to be with respect to religion, language and demographics as a whole not just for Assam but for the country as a whole.

Guwahati: The fate of an estimated four million residents of Assam hangs in the balance after the state released the final draft of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) excluding them. "This is not only about 40 lakh people, if you consider their children, families, it comes to 1-1.5 crore people", Azad claimed, adding that the issue may have worldwide ramifications, especially India's relation with "close friend" Bangladesh.

Amid an intensifying political confrontation over Assam's National Register for Citizens, the Supreme Court stated on Tuesday that the exercise for verifying the citizenship of residents of the state will be taken to its logical conclusion, even as it asked the Centre to frame a "fair and equitable" standard operating procedure to adjudicate claims for Indian citizenship.

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"If the government has made a decision to brand us foreigners what can we do?" said the 60-year-old.

"The NRC is trying to finish us off". The people know that there is a system in place and it is for their benefit.

The final list of the National Register of Citizens was released on July 30. Mr Singh said, it is asensitive issue which should not be politicised.

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The state government had also written to the village councils, asking them to remain vigilant and not to allow illegal immigrants to enter their areas or employ them in any manner, he said. "Leaving so many people out of the draft list is a calculated plan ahead of the 2019 general elections", said Banerjee.

Sailesh, who uses one name, said more than 4 million left out can file appeals by September 30 and prove their Indian nationality by providing documents.

The BJP said the NRC was monitored by the country's top court and there was no question of discriminating on the basis of religion.

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Allegations of illegal movement of people from India's porous border with Bangladesh have triggered sectarian tensions between the state's indigenous population and Bengali-speaking Muslims.

Sonowal said that they would be given a chance to prove their claim of citizenship, that none of the 4 million would be sent to a detention camp, and that "no one will be treated as a foreigner". In 2005, Manmohan Singh chaired a meeting to review the implementation of the Assam Accord where it was chose to update the NRC.

Singh also reiterated that people finding their names missing from the list could raise objections and appeals, and said that they would not be thrown into detention centers. It has been overseen by the supreme court. Abdul Suban, 60, a Bengali-speaking Muslim, said earlier. These include D-voters (doubtful voters who have been disenfranchized as they could not prove citizenship), descendants of D-voters, and cases pending before the foreigners' tribunal. "What is happening is very risky", she said. "Terrible things happened to our family once, we don't want a repeat".

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