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HC Advocate questions fairness in NRC update

Special Correspondent
Silchar, May 30: When the NRC update is in the final and crucial stage and the publication of the second draft roll is anxiously awaited, Pradip Dutta Roy, senior most advocate of Gauhati High Court, has raised question about it being free and fair. His particular concern, as a citizen of this country, is about the formation of two judge bench with Justice Ranjan Gogoi on it as one of them to update NRC. Addressing a well attended press-meet at the conference hall of a hotel here on Wednesday, Pradip Dutta Roy said he has conveyed his concern on the subject to Chief Justice of India, Deepak Misra, in a letter to him posted on May 28. He shared the contents of the letter with the media persons.

Dutta Roy said Justice Ranjan Gogoi is a bonafide resident of Assam who is also a voter of the State. He too comes under the purview of NRC process like any other residents of Assam. He is also an applicant in the update of NRC along with his family members. His family background brings into sharp focus the fact that he is the son of Keshab Gogoi who was the finance minister in the Janata Dal Cabinet. The issue of NRC has generated an atmosphere of mistrust among various communities of the State. People in general are curious about the involvement of Justice Ranjan Gogoi for the sake of natural justice. Dutta Roy at the same time expresses his apprehension at the eruption of a volatile situation after the publication of second draft roll.

Dutta Roy thinks the Chief Justice of India might well be aware of the grave and alarming situation prevailing in Assam. Against this backdrop, he said the general impression is that the way an unease situation is emerging; can the updated NRC safeguard the interests of all communities of the state? While expressing his highest regard for the Indian judiciary system, Dutta Roy fervently appeals to Chief Justice to see that the doubts impinging the minds of people on the most sensitive and emotive issue are dispelled. Dutta Roy said he dared to hold the press-meet, following the example set by Justice Ranjan Gogoi along with three other judges of the Supreme Court to vent their resentment against the Chief Justice of India on the question of protocol.

Dutta Roy also noted with concern the opposition and protest mounted by AASU against the Citizenship Amendment Bill allegedly misguided by some intellectuals of Brahmaputra Valley. He reached out to AASU leaders to come to Barak Valley to have free and fair exchange of views and opinions for evolving a just solution to the problem. His advice was for a conclave with the intellectuals and thinkers of Barak Valley in order to remove any misconception on the Bill.