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Giving deadline 'a miss' Hajela comes under Congress scanner



By our Staff Reporter
GUWAHATI, Nov 10: With Dispur seemingly giving December 31, 2017-deadline set by the Supreme Court for publication of draft NRC a miss, the State Congress has demanded a high-level inquiry against NRC Coordinator Prateek Hajela.
The Supreme Court on Thursday sternly pulled up the Centre, Assam Government and Prateek Hajela, after it had been informed that verification of additional 1.23 crore documents were still pending prior to publication of draft NRC. The bench of the Apex Court comprising Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice F Nariman asked Hajela the reason why such a large number of documents were yet to be verified in NRC update process.
Addressing the media at Rajiv Bhawan in Guwahati, APCC president Ripun Bora said: “NRC update work was going on a war footing when the Congress was in power at Dispur. With the BJP coming at helm, NRC work slows down abruptly. The BJP-led government at the Centre also did the mischief by not releasing funds for NRC update on time. Dispur told the Apex Court in its affidavit that it would publish the draft of NRC by December 31, 2017. However, Hajela informed the apex court on Thursday that 1.23 crore NRC documents were still to be verified. The statement has made it clear that the government is going to give the deadline set by the Supreme Court a miss. It seems that NRC update is going to take two years more. If 1.23 crore NRC documents are still to be verified, how come Hajela said earlier that only 48 lakh panchayat documents were left for verification, of which 17 lakh were of genuine Indian citizens and the rest 23 lakh doubtful? It makes it clear that Hajela’s role in NRC update is fishy. We want a high-level inquiry to as certain his role and the reason behind such delays. We’re going to make the Apex Court known to it.”
Bora said: “The RSS and the BJP never want NRC update that may put an end to their atrocities on people in the name of citizenship. Our stand is crystal clear that NRC has to be published on time without inclusion of any foreigner and exclusion of any genuine Indian from and into it.”
CLP leader Debabrata Saikia said: “We did move the Supreme Court on the issue of ‘Original Inhabitants (OI)’. The court admitted the petition on Friday and is going to hear it on November 22. There have been no clear-cut guidelines on OI from the RGI, the Centre and the State Government. Only there has a standing order from the Supreme Court to treat Tea Tribes as original inhabitants of the State. The ‘OI’ tag has created suspicion in Assam and that has led us to the move the apex court.”