Assam NRC: SC defers hearing till September 19

Last Updated: Wed, Sep 05, 2018 22:33 hrs
Supreme Court

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday deferred the hearing on inclusion of names in the Assam National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft list.

A bench of the top court, headed by Justice Ranjan Gogoi and also comprising Justice Rohinton Fali Nariman, deferred the hearing till September 19.

Last week, the apex court had sought a detailed report from the Assam NRC coordinator Prateek Hajela regarding why those who want to be included in the NRC draft list were asked to provide fresh additional documents. The top court division bench was hearing from Hajela and the Centre on the issue of inclusion and omissions of names in the NRC draft list.

Earlier, the process of filing claims and objections was deferred to September first week. The court had asked for a recommendation report from Hajela regarding the feasibility of the proposed process.

The Centre, which is exploring to give second chance to nearly 40 lakh aggrieved people whose names have not been included in the list, had asked the NRC coordinator if the process was feasible.

The top court had earlier directed the Assam NRC coordinator to provide it with the data of district-wise percentage of the population excluded from the NRC draft in the state. The apex court had sought the response of all the stakeholders including the All Assam Students Union and the All Assam Minority Students Union on the Centre's Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) in this regard.

Further directing Hajela to make the draft NRC public, the court said that claims and objections would be accepted from August 30.

The top court on August 7 held Hajela and Registrar General of India guilty of contempt of court, reprimanding them for making statements to media on the NRC Assam modalities when nothing had been informed to the court.

The second draft, which was released on July 30, included names of 2.89 crore people, out of 3.29 crore applicants in Assam, leaving out names of nearly 40 lakh people.

On July 31, the court, while the hearing case, observed that the process of filing objections by those whose names were not listed in the NRC draft should be fair, and directed the Centre to prepare a SOP for claims and objections.

The NRC draft features names, addresses and photographs of all Indian citizens residing in the state of Assam before March 25, 1971.