GUWAHATI: As Assam gears up to publish the “complete draft” of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) on July 30, hundreds of people in the state's South Salmara-Mankachar district are struggling to prove their citizenship as some officials of a primary health centre (PHC) allegedly destroyed birth-related documents going back 25 years. The officials had allegedly issued birth certificates in lieu of cash.
Two persons, advocate Anisur Rahman and Azaharul Islam, who filed an FIR with the police on Tuesday alleging that the PHC had burnt the documents said that during the filing of the application for inclusion of names in the NRC, a large number of people from South Salmara had enclosed birth certificates as proof of citizenship.
"However, when the NRC officials approached the PHC officials during the verification of the certificates, the officials replied that the records from 1985-2010 were not available with them as they had been washed out," the duo wrote in the FIR. They claimed that all the other documents at the PHC were intact.
The complainants claimed they had learnt that all records pertaining to the issuance of birth certificates from 1985-2010 were kept concealed and later, destroyed.
The complainants said the officials had resorted to wrongdoing to protect their jobs and avoid legal consequences.
"From 2010, the hospital authority issued a number of birth certificates using one serial number. In this regard, we approached the higher authority several times but no action was taken. Being concerned people of the area, we were compelled to lodge the FIR seeking a fair investigation," they said.
South Salmara-Mankachar Deputy Commissioner (District Magistrate) Atika Sultana said they were probing the matter.