Plea on status of D-voters in NRC

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GUWAHATI, NOVEMBER 27: The All Assam Minorities’ Students Union (AAMSU) has told the Supreme Court that instead of putting the application status of D (doubtful)-voters “on hold” in the final National Register of Citizens (NRC) as prescribed in the approved modalities, the authorities have rejected those names.
The union on Monday filed a petition in the Supreme Court, which monitored the register update exercise in Assam. It urged the Court to issue necessary directions so that cases of D-voters are processed and scrutinised by the NRC authorities and their names included in the final register, if found eligible.
In 1997, the Election Commission had directed the Assam Government to carry out an intensive revision of the electoral rolls and mark ‘D’ against names of voters whose citizenship was suspected to be doubtful. Consequently, the Government indicated D against the name of more than 2.33 lakh voters in Assam. The number came down to 1.25 lakh last year.
The NRC modalities earlier allowed D-voters to apply for inclusion of their names in the updated NRC. However, it said their names would be finally included only when the appropriate foreigners tribunal declares them citizens.
The union told the apex Court that D-voters were “unreasonably” and “unnecessarily” excluded from the final NRC, despite having necessary documentation in support of their citizenship as required under the Citizenship Act, 1955.
Names of 19.06 lakh applicants were left out of the final NRC published on August 31. The NRC authorities have not mentioned how many of them are D-voters.
It also urged the Court that cases of applicants who may have been excluded from the final NRC owing to “technical faults” as well as those who have been excluded because of bona fide mistakes, may be given an opportunity for inclusion. It said in a number of cases it has been observed that names of persons have been excluded from the final NRC owing to technical faults. (Courtesy: TT)