Four days ahead of the first phase of Assam polls, the BJP on Tuesday (March 23) promised “working towards a corrected National Register of Citizens” (NRC) that would protect “genuine Indian citizens” and “detect infiltrated” people.
In the party manifesto released by party chief JP Nadda in Guwahati, the state BJP said if elected for a second time, the party would speed up the delimitation process to “protect Assam’s political rights.”
Assam goes to the three-phase polling for the 126-member Assembly from March 27. The counting will be held on May 2. The ruling BJP is challenged by the Congress and its Mahajot allies.
“We will protect genuine Indian citizens and detect infiltrators to ensure the Ahom civilization stays safe,” Nadda said in a press interaction.
Nadda said the incumbent BJP is making 10 commitments to the people of Assam if they bring it back to power. “We have gained momentum of development. We are standing for a big leap. With these aspirations, we have put our words in 10 commitments to the people of Assam,” he said.
Among the major commitments are building big reservoirs around the Brahmaputra to conserve extra water under the Brahmaputra vision to save the people from floods; 30 lakh deserving families will be paid financial support of ₹ 3,000 per month under Orunodoi scheme; a corrected NRC for Assam’s protection and speed up delimitation process.
The National Register of Citizens (NRC) is a list of people who can prove they came to Assam by March 24, 1971, the day before neighbouring Bangladesh declared independence from Pakistan. People left out will have 120 days to appeal against their exclusion.
The Supreme Court mandated and monitored NRC draft was announced on July 30, 2018. More than four million people had their names excluded from the list. Many student unions, political parties, and even the administration have tried to show that there would be no violence in the aftermath. Other groups have pointed out that the exercise was faulty and the rhetoric that pushed it was divisive in nature.
The Citizenship Amendment Act that gives citizenship to all minorities from India’s neighbouring Muslim majority countries was passed by Parliament on January 8, 2019. It led to a peculiar situation: organizations that welcomed the NRC came out in opposition to the Act, while many who were opposed to the NRC, especially in the Barak Valley, supported the CAA.
The Congress has promised that it would stop the implementation of CAA in the state, Rahul Gandhi said recently, adding “one force born in Nagpur is trying to control the whole country,” in direct reference to the RSS.