According to a survey conducted by the Rights & Risks Analysis Group (RRAG), those who have been left out from the NRC list in Assam spent a total of Rs 7,836 crore in appeals and hearings. Those excluded had to appeal at the Foreigners Tribunals (FTs) which also included lawyers' fees.
Those excluded from the final NRC could face imprisonment for an indefinite period to deportation or remaining stateless forever with a direct impact on the descendants, the report adds.
The NRC exercise carried out under the supervision of the Supreme Court aims to identify foreigners who entered the state after the 24th of March 1971. This is in keeping with Assam Accord that was agreed upon by the Centre and state bodies.
The bureaucratic rigmarole requires those excluded to attend NRC hearings along with their family and blood relatives. The expenses increase because the excluded person can be called to appear multiple times before the NRC Seva Kendra, the hearing body to hear appeals, which is located in another district.
"The NRC has made 41,10,169 persons who constitute about 13% of the 31 million population of the State and are overwhelmingly below the poverty line extremely poor. Many had to mortgage agricultural lands, sell their cattle/livestock, and agricultural products like betel nuts/ paddy/ betel nut gardens/ jackfruit garden, sell their only means of income like auto-rickshaw, while many took loans to meet the expenses for the NRC hearings," states the report.