Many Guwahati citizens left out of Draft NRC
Many well-established residents of Guwahati could not find their names in the draft NRC published on December 31 last.
A resident of Jyotikuchi, Kedar Nath said, “My ancestors are from Guwahati and all the documents of my family members were gathered from the offices in the city. Why was the NRC Secretariat not able to verify them when they were all from the same city?”
Similarly, Bhupen Deka and his family, who have been living in the city for several decades, were confused with the published list since the name of only his three year old daughter figured in the list. He said that some documents were yet to be verified by the NRC Secretariat.
Deka echoed many other residents including former chief minister Tarun Gogoi who was of the view that the NRC Seva Kendras were yet to accomplish 90% of the work allotted to them.
He questioned how the ULFA chief-of-staff, Paresh Baruah’s name, entered the draft list while Guwahati-based journalist, Wasbir Hussain’s was excluded.
Kamrup (Metro) deputy commissioner Dr M Angamuthu however clarified that non-inclusion of names of genuine citizens was due to the failure to complete the procedure essential for compiling the list.
He said that the second phase of verification work had started on 5th January for which 281 verification teams have been constituted for completion of the verification process.
Central govt offices yet to reply to NRC Secretariat
The Kamrup (Metro) district administration was able to publish the names of 7.5 lakh applicants in Guwahati out of a total of 11.49 lakhs since documents could not be verified by many central government offices.
A senior official of the administration said that 25% of the documents were yet to be verified by the central government offices whose number is around 700 in the city. “Some of these offices are located in the city and others are at some far-off locations. Receipt of replies from them would be essential for inclusion of more names in the NRC.”
He described that while applying for the NRC, two sets of documents were submitted. In List A, documents of citizenship before 24th March 1971 and in List B the family legacy documents were submitted.
For family legacy, people submitted documents like PAN card, employment certificates and identity cards, passports, birth certificates and so on which could establish the relation in the family tree.
He said that these documents submitted for legacy were sent to the issuing authorities in and outside the state.
Offices under central government ministries like railways, external affairs and finance have not sent the verification status in spite of repeated reminders which has delayed the process.
So far only the government of Nagaland has responded promptly to the NRC secretariat’s requests for verification of documents. Other states like Meghalaya, Bihar and West Bengal have been slow in sending their replies.