First draft of NRC published with 1.9 crore names
Guwahati: The much-awaited first draft of the National Register of Citizens, containing 1.9 crore names, was released at Sunday midnight, following which people have been flocking to the seva kendras across Assam since Monday morning to check whether their names figured in it.
As many as 3.29 crore people had applied for inclusion in the registry.
Releasing the first draft, Registrar General of India (RGI) Sailesh said, "There is no need for anyone to panic.
Other names are in various stages of verification. As soon as the verification is done, we will come out with another draft. Substantial progress has been made, but still, lots of work need to be done."
"This (NRC) is unprecedented. I doubt if there is any other country in the world having such a complex methodology to determine the citizenship of the people," he told media persons.
About the possible date for the next draft, Sailesh said the NRC Authority would present its case before the Supreme Court, under whose monitoring the document was being prepared, at the following hearing in April and the date would be decided accordingly.
"We are working to publish an error-free draft. What time and when we will publish the next draft will be as per the Supreme Court guidance. We will be able to complete the entire process in this year," the RGI said.
He informed the reporters that the groundwork for the mammoth exercise began in December 2013 and so far 40 hearings have taken place in the apex court.
NRC State Coordinator Prateek Hajela said application process began in May 2015 and a total of 6.5 crore documents were received from 68.27 lakh families across Assam.
"The process to verify the names is tedious. So there is a possibility that some names within a single family may not be there in the first draft. There is no need to panic as rest of the documents are under verification," he said.
People carrying documents to prove their citizenship thronged the seva kendras, which opened at 8 am, and stood in long queues to check if their names were included in the draft.
Many families claimed that names of only some of their members were found in the first draft, while others said none featured in it.
Servers of the official websites for checking names in the NRC draft got jammed as thousands of people were attempting to see their names in the first draft online, NRC sources said.
The Office of the State Coordinator of National Register of Citizens, Assam, has arranged for five ways to check the names included in the draft.
Printed copies of the draft can be checked at NRC seva kendras on Monday between 8 am to 4 pm and 10am to 4 pm on all working days until January 31. It can also be checked online at ww.nrcassam.nic.in, www.assam.mygov.in, www.assam.gov.in and www.homeandpolitical.assam.gov.in.
It can also be checked through automatic receipt of SMS by pre-registering applicant's mobile number by sending an SMS to 9765556555 or 9108464438 and 9108464450. Furthermore, demand SMS be can sent to the same phone numbers by typing ARN and after putting a space the 21 digit application receipt number (ARN).