JHARKHAND Govt Examining Possibility Of NRC

AS Jharkhand Government is examining the feasibility of preparing a National Register of Citizens (NRC) and a team of senior officers from the state recently visited Assam to know how the NRC is being prepared, The Asom Jatiyabadi Yuba Chhatra Parishad (AJYCP) has renewed its demand for Inner-Line Permit in the north-eastern state. The youth body has asserted that the indigenous population would not get the benefits of NRC unless constitutional safeguard and ILP is implemented in the State.“The final draft of long awaited NRC has been published. However, it is yet to be seen whether it is going to protect the interests of the indigenous people or not. We are of the opinion that unless the National Register of Citizens is supported by some additional provisions like giving some constitutional and economic safeguards to the indigenous people of Assam, it won’t be able to serve the purpose entirely,” the youth body’s central committee president Putul Dutta and general secretary Palash Changmai said Since Independence, illegal  migration has affected the socioeconomic condition of the State in an adverse manner and some effective steps are necessary to save the indigenous people from becoming minorities in their own land,” Changmai said. Also expressing concern over the reports of steps taken up by the neighbouring states after publication of the final draft of the NRC in Assam, the AJYCP leaders said that whereas the other states are expelling the doubtful citizens, Assam has no such mechanism to stop those people from taking shelter in our  poor state.“We would start our movement with a three-hour sit-in demonstration throughout Assam. The five –decade –old movement will be resumed the AJYCP leaders said. Officials  from Jharkhand  reportedly told their Assam counterparts though  the  state does not have any international border with Bangladesh, the state is also facing the problem from illegal migrants from the neighbouring country and the problem became serious at least in two districts bordering West Bengal. Illegal migrants from Bangladesh enter India through the porous international border and start moving into other states and Jharkhand already started feeling the pinch. According to information available, the illegal migrants, who entered Jharkhand, managed to sneak into India mostly through the international border in West Bengal. India has about 4096 KM international border with Bangladesh and West Bengal has the highest length of 2217 kilometres of border with the neighbouring country. As the problem of infiltration has posed a threat to the identity of indigenous people in at least two districts of Jharkhand, the Government of the state has started exploring the feasibility of preparing an NRC in the state by taking lessons from the exercise carried out in Assam. A team of senior officers of the Government of Jharkhand recently visited Assam and held discussions with the officers of the Assam Government, State NRC Coordinator and office bearers of the All Assam Students’ Union (AASU). However, the modalities of preparing an NRC in Jharkhand will have to be different from that of Assam. In Assam, the NRC of 1951 was the basis on which it was updated, while, as per the provisions of the Assam Accord, midnight of March 24, 1971 was the cut off date. There is NRC of 1951 in Jharkhand and the cut off date for identification of foreigners would be different, he added.Commenting on the AASU’s discussion with the team of officials of Jharkhand Government, the chief adviser of the students’ body , Samujjal Bhattacharya said that the officers wanted to know the reasons for preparation of the NRC in Assam and the modalities used for it. “We gave them a detailed account of the events leading to the updating of the NRC right from the first memorandum to the Prime Minister in 1980, the reasons and details of the Assam movement and Assam Accord and the modalities used for it. We also told them that the publication of the draft was possible because of constant monitoring of the Supreme Court,” he added. He also said that the AASU members gave details of the meetings with the Government of India at different levels, both political and official, before the process of updating the NRC started. The North East Students’ Organization (NESO) has already demanded that NRC should be prepared in all the states of the region and Bhattacharya said that the modalities might vary depending on the situation in the respective states, but there is need for preparing NRC in all the states of the region to protect the identity of the indigenous people, he was quated saying by the NE’s leading daily The Assam Tribune.

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