oppn parties Remove The Flaws Before Implementing NRC In Other States

News Snippets

  • The government decides to decriminalize more than two-thirds of penal sections in the Companies Act
  • Muslim groups tell the Supreme Court that they want the Babri Masjid to be restored
  • Muslim groups claim that while they were asked questions in court, Hindus were not questioned
  • Postpaid mobile services restored in Jammu & Kashmir from today, but still no internet
  • Abhijit Banerjee, an Indian-American currently a professor at MIT, wins the 2019 Noble prize in economics jointly with two others
  • Industrial output slumps in August as the IIP shrinks by 1.1%
  • Prime Minister Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping watch a cultural show at the Shore Temple in Mamallapuram
  • J&K administration lifts the ban on entry of tourists in the Valley, but it remains doubtful how many will visit without being able to use mobile phones and internet
  • After Sena asks members to support the BJP candidate in Kalyan, 26 party corporators and 300 members resign setting off a crisis
  • The Centre sets up a 12-member committee to suggest systemic changes in the GST structure to improve compliance and collection, prevent misuse and evasion and rationalize rates and slabs
  • In line with the RBI outlook on the Indian economy, rating firm Moody's also downgrades growth forecast from 6.8% to 5.8% this year, saying the economy is experiencing a pronounced slowdown
  • HDFC chairman Deepak Parekh says the financial system in India does not offer foolproof security for misuse of the savings of the common man
  • Shivinder Singh and Malvinder Singh, promoters of Ranbaxy and Fortis, arrested for their role in Religare Finvest scam
  • Supreme Court says marriage can be dissolved if it has broken down irretrievably
  • DA of Central government staff hiked by 5% to 17%
Sourav Ganguly is the new president of BCCI, says conflict of interest is a big concern
oppn parties
Remove The Flaws Before Implementing NRC In Other States

By Sunil Garodia

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Editor-in-Chief of indiacommentary.com. Current Affairs analyst and political commentator. Writes for a number of publications.

Whether the BJP admits it or not, the NRC process as it stands now is deeply flawed. Despite spending nearly Rs 1500cr, the flawed NRC in Assam managed to create confusion rather than solve any problem. It has failed to achieve most of its objectives and has raised the hackles of almost every party, group or organization that had wanted the exercise.

Yet, BJP leaders are hell-bent on taking the NRC process to other states, especially West Bengal, in order to weed out Bangladeshi infiltrators. They say that West Bengal has more Bangladeshis than even Assam and they need to be identified and deported to maintain the demographic balance in the state. They have made it one of the planks on which they will fight the state chief minister, Mamata Banerjee, in the state elections in 2021

This has created a panic among the citizens. Several suicides have been reported in the state among those who thought that their existing documents would not be enough to get them in the NRC and they would not be able to obtain the relevant documents. Although Kailash Vijayvargiya, BJP's West Bengal in-charge has said that they will implement the NRC in the state if voted to power, Mamata Banerjee has already said many times that she would not allow NRC in West Bengal, but the panic has not subsided.

This is an alarming state of affairs. By fanning the fears, the BJP is doing a disservice to the nation. The idea behind the NRC cannot be disputed. No country would allow illegal infiltration into its territory. Such illegal immigrants (called "termites" by the BJP president Amit Shah during the 2019 election campaign) need to be identified and a register of citizens must not include their names.

But has the NRC process that was undertaken in Assam achieved that? The answer is a resounding no. More Indian citizens have been left out of the NRC in Assam than illegal infiltrators. Several genuine documents, like the refugee certificate, for example, were not accepted as the government did not have matching documents to verify the claim. Other anomalies, corruption and bias were also reported.

The Assam NRC process should become the subject of deep study. Even if NRC is to be implemented in the future in any other state, it should be done only after a proper and expert analysis of the flaws in the present model. The flaws should then be removed before an exercise of such scale is implemented.

Finally, the government also needs to clarify what it will do with those who are finally declared illegal immigrants. It is obvious they cannot be kept in detention camps for life. It is also obvious that they cannot be deported to Bangladesh as the country is not ready to accept them. Also, what of those who have slipped into Assam or West Bengal and have the settled in some other part of India. All these issues also need to be settled before implementing the NRC in any other state.