* SC to hold suo moto hearing on Tuesday
GUWAHATI, Aug 5: The Union Home Ministry is working overtime to frame standard operating procedure (SOP) to deal with claims and objections exercise of NRC (National Register of Citizens) update in a free, fair and transparent manner so that names of all genuine Indians could be included in the final NRC.
After publication of the complete draft NRC on July 30, the Supreme Court asked the Centre to finalize the SOP for deciding claims and objections for inclusion and exclusion in the final NRC by August 16.
“The Home Ministry in full consultation with the State NRC Coordinator Prateek Hajela is working out details including time frames that will be required to dispose of claims and objections of NRC applicants. The SOP will focus on giving adequate and sufficient opportunities to all 40 lakh applicants to left out from the draft NRC to prove their claims of being Indian citizens,” a source told The Sentinel.
On July 31, Attorney General KK Venugopal on behalf of the Centre submitted before the Supreme Court that the government wanted to collect biometric details of the 40 lakh people excluded from the draft NRC. Even though the Supreme Court refused to give its comment on the Centre’s move on biometric details since submission by Venugopal was verbal, the Centre is now thinking of linking such biometric details with AADHAAR enrollment in Assam. Since AADHAAR enrollment has not yet picked up in the State due to various hurdles, the Centre is thinking that collection of biometric details of all NRC applicants ((3,29,91,384) will make the task easier. Since AADHAAR enrollment is not related citizenship status biometric details of those included and excluded from the draft NRC can be collected.
On the other hand, the Supreme Court will take a suo motu hearing on NRC update on August 7. Besides other top officials, the State NRC coordinator Prateek Hajela and top officials of the Home & Political department will attend the Tuesday’s hearing.