Citing SC verdict, CEC rules out conducting NRC in Bengal
Kolkata: Putting an end to speculations, Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora on Friday said there is no possibility of conducting the National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Bengal till the Supreme Court verdict is out.
"Let the Supreme Court come out with a verdict. At the moment it is for Assam. The Supreme court has not given the verdict. I cannot give a verdict and cannot forecast," he said.
Arora is in the city to attend events organised by the West Bengal National University of Juridical Sciences and IIM (Calcutta) on Friday and Saturday.
It may be recalled that after getting landslide victory in the general election, BJP leaders in Bengal had said the NRC will be conducted immediately and the infiltrators will be pushed back.
The purpose of the NRC, which is being updated in Assam under the Apex Court's supervision, is to identify bonafide Indian citizens living in the state and weed out illegal migrants.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has said over and again in her election speeches as well as while addressing party leaders that the NRC in Bengal will not be allowed.
The matter came to head after the names of 42 lakh people belonging to the Hindu and Muslim communities got deleted from the NRC. The names of the family members of former President Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed had been dropped from the list of citizens.
As a mark of protest, Banerjee sent party MPs led by Kakoli Ghosh Dastidar in Assam to meet the aggrieved people. However, the Assam government did not allow them to come out of the airport and were sent back.
Banerjee had said during her election speeches that the Centre had asked for certain documents that the people find difficult to furnish. "If they ask someone who is above 70 years old to give a copy of the birth certificate, then the person will find it impossible to submit the document as it was not issued during his childhood. On the basis of this, if his name is dropped from the NRC then it is entirely unjustified."
In almost all the election meetings, she had strongly condemned the Centre's role to conduct the NRC as "it was an attempt to isolate a particular community."
On her instructions, all the Trinamool Congress leaders had spoken against NRC as it was an attempt to scare people. Banerjee had threatened to launch a movement if Centre decides to conduct NRC in Bengal.