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- Prelims – Polity
- Mains – GS 2 (Citizenship, Federalism; Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation)
In News: The State Coordinator of National Register of Citizens (NRC), Assam has requested members of foreigners tribunals across the state not to consider draft NRC and supplementary list as reliable evidence for disposal of cases under judicial or quasi-judicial process
- Reason – Final NRC is yet to be published by the Registrar General of Citizens Registration which is mandatory as per cause 7 of the Schedule of the Citizenship Rules, 2003. Before that there is possibility reverification of names considering the errors.
- Results of the Draft NRC and Supplementary list may change when Final NRC gets published
- National Register of Citizens, 1951 is a register prepared after the conduct of the Census of 1951 in respect of each village, showing the houses or holdings in a serial order and indicating against each house or holding the number and names of persons staying therein.
- The NRC was published only once in 1951.
- This NRC was prepared under a directive from the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA).
NRC in Assam
- The NRC in Assam is basically a list of Indian citizens living in the state. The citizens’ register sets out to identify foreign nationals in the state that borders Bangladesh.
- The reason behind the move was to identify Indian citizens in Assam amid “unabated” migration from East Pakistan (now Bangladesh).
How will the NRC be updated?
- The NRC will be updated as per the provisions of The Citizenship Act, 1955 and The Citizenship (Registration of Citizens and Issue of National Identity Cards) Rules, 2003.
Eligibility for inclusion in updated NRC
- Persons whose names appear in NRC, 1951
- Persons whose names appear in the Electoral Rolls up to 24th March (midnight), 1971
- Descendants of the above persons
- Persons who came to Assam from Bangladesh between 1st January 1966 and 25th March 1971 and registered themselves with the Foreigner Regional Registration Office (FRRO) and were declared by the Foreigner Tribunal as Indian citizens.
- All Indian Citizens including their children and descendants who have moved to Assam post 24th March 1971 would be eligible for inclusion in the updated NRC on adducing satisfactory proof of residence in any part of the country (outside Assam) as of 24th March 1971.
- Persons who can provide any of the admissible documents issued up to 24th March midnight, 1971.
Objectives and need
- It effectively suggests bringing legislation that will enable the government to identify infiltrators who have been living in India illegally, detain them and finally deport them where they came from.
- It will target illegal immigrants in India.
- The tribunals are quasi-judicial bodies, to determine if a person staying illegally is a “foreigner” or not.
- Every individual, whose name does not figure in the final National Register of Citizens (NRC), can represent his/her case in front of the appellate authority i.e. Foreigners Tribunals (FT).
- Composition: Advocates not below the age of 35 years of age with at least 7 years of practice (or) Retired Judicial Officers from the Assam Judicial Service (or) Retired IAS of ACS Officers (not below the rank of Secretary/Addl. Secretary) having experience in quasi-judicial works.
Who can setup these tribunals?
- The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has amended the Foreigners (Tribunals) Order, 1964, and has empowered district magistrates in all States and Union Territories to set up tribunals (quasi-judicial bodies) to decide whether a person staying illegally in India is a foreigner or not.
- Earlier, the powers to constitute tribunals were vested only with the Centre.
Who can approach?
- The amended order (Foreigners (Tribunal) Order, 2019) also empowers individuals to approach the Tribunals.
- Earlier, only the State administration could move the Tribunal against a suspect.
Previous Year Questions (PYQs)
Q.1) Consider the following statements: (2013)
- The National Development Council is an organ of the Planning Commission.
- The Economic and Social Planning is kept in the Concurrent List in the Constitution of India.
- The Constitution of India prescribes that Panchayats should be assigned the task of preparation of plans for economic development and social justice.
Select the correct code:
- 1 only
- 2 and 3 only
- 1 and 3 only
- 1,2 and 3
Source: Hindustan Times