Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal said that had Assam government been given the full responsibility to update the National Register of Citizens (NRC), it would have been a “correct NRC”
Replying to the debate on Governor’s Speech during the one-day special session of the Assam Assembly on January 13th, 2020, Sonowal said, “I can tell it with confidence that if the Assam government had got full responsibility of the NRC upgrade work, then it would have been a correct NRC. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) wants a correct NRC.”
In his over an hour-long speech that ended post-midnight, Sonowal said that the Assam government had no role to play in the NRC updation process as it was carried out directly under the supervision of the Supreme Court.
The Assam government officially released the final NRC list on August 31st, 2019, where names of 3,11,21,004 persons were found eligible and 19,06,657 persons were excluded from the list including those who did not submit claims. Sonowal further informed that his government provided the service of 55,000 of its employees and the police force for the security purpose.
Speaking about the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), the chief minister said, “Misinformations are being spread about CAA. The rules are not framed yet and the Assam government has forwarded its suggestions to the Centre. The indigenous people of the state will be given land rights. The definition of indigenous will also be decided. I can never think of betraying my mother, Assam.”
As per the CAA, the members of Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi and Christian communities who have entered India from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan till December 31st, 2014 facing religious persecution there will not be treated as illegal immigrants but given Indian citizenship. The critics have termed the act a “violation of the historic Assam Accord, communal” and unconstitutional”.
Sonowal added, “I appeal to the opposition parties to not mislead the people. My government is committed to safeguarding the culture, identity and language of Assam.”