New Delhi, July 23: The Supreme Court on Tuesday extended the deadline to finalise the National Register of Citizens for Assam to August 31 from July 31. The apex court, however, rejected the pleas by the Centre and Assam government for conducting re-verification of names to check wrongful inclusions or exclusions, especially in districts bordering Bangladesh.
Last week, the Centre and Assam government sought an extension to finalise the NRC to verify wrongful inclusions and exclusions. They also sought permission to conduct a sample re-verification process to quell a growing perception that many illegal immigrants may have infiltrated the NRC. Both the governments said that they should be allowed to undertake verification of 20 per cent random samples of citizens for wrongful inclusions or exclusions in the NRC. Supreme Court Pulls Up Modi Government, Says 'MHA Hell Bent on Destroying NRC Process'.
"Please extend the deadline for publication of final Assam NRC from July 31 to a future date. There is a growing perception that many exclusions and many more inclusions have been made wrongly," Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Centre and the state government, said. "India cannot be the refugee capital of the world,” Mehta said, adding there was a need to re-look the draft NRC list through sample verification.
A special bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice R F Nariman had fixed July 31 as the deadline for publication of the final list of the NRC and had reiterated that it will not be extended.
The first draft of the NRC for Assam was published on the intervening night of December 31, 2017, and January 1, 2018, in accordance with the top court’s direction. Names of 1.9 crore people out of the 3.29 crore applicants were incorporated then.