The deadline for the publication of final National Register of Citizens (NRC) for Assam has been extended by the Supreme Court on Tuesday by a month from July 31 to August 31.
The top court, however, declined the joint plea of the Center and Assam government for the re-verification of 20% of NRC inclusions of people in Assam's districts bordering Bangladesh.
Assam NRC Coordinator requested the SC to extend deadline
The SC extended the deadline based on Assam NRC Coordinator Prateek Hajela's request.
On July 19, he asked for an extension to finish the NRC process, which was affected due to the recent floods in Assam.
He said the process of furnishing a supplementary NRC list will be done by August 31 and the final consolidated list could be published by September 7.
'India cannot be the refugee capital of the world'
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing the Center, also requested the SC on Tuesday to extend NRC's deadline.
He said, "Please extend the deadline for publication of final Assam NRC from 31 July... There is a growing perception that many exclusions and many more inclusions have been made wrongly."
"India cannot be the refugee capital of the world," he added, stressing the need for sample-verification.
Why did the Center and Assam government seek re-verification?
The Center and the Assam Government earlier filed pleas for re-verification of 20% of the names from Assam's border districts and 10% in other districts. The re-verification of the draft NRC data was requested to eliminate the inclusion of illegal migrants.
Hajela reiterated that sample re-verification is not necessary
Appearing for the Center and Assam on July 19, Mehta submitted to the SC that sample re-verification of at least 20% of inclusions in Assam's border districts was necessary.
"Wrongful inclusions are manifold in the districts bordering Bangladesh," Mehta had said.
However, NRC Coordinator Hajela reiterated on Tuesday that re-verification is not necessary, based on which the SC declined the request.
About the National Register of Citizens for Assam
Assam is the only state in the country to have an NRC. The register was first prepared in 1951.
The NRC is now being updated for the first time since 1951 in order to account for the illegal migration from Bangladesh to Assam.
However, the names of as many as 40 lakh were excluded from the complete draft NRC list released in 2018.