GUWAHATI: The publication of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Assam has triggered a panic among organisations in some neighbouring states such as Meghalaya and Nagaland. They fear illegal Bangladeshi immigrants would now enter their territory to avoid action in Assam. Over 19 lakh people were excluded from the final list of the NRC published on Saturday.
On Monday, the Khasi Students’ Union (KSU) conducted a ‘search operation’ at two industrial units in Meghalaya’s West Khasi Hills and found 30 non-tribals without any “NRC documents”. The men were found working as labourers. “We asked them to produce NRC documents, but they failed to do so. They said they have the documents, but they were not carrying them,” KSU leader Wanbhakupar Lyngdoh Nonglait said.
“The mill managers have assured us that they will send them back until they provide NRC documents. On our part, we will conduct raids at all factories and other project sites to ensure that we are not burdened with illegal immigrants.” The KSU fears that the immigrants will migrate to Meghalaya taking advantage of the absence of police check posts on the inter-state border. A similar fear has gripped several other organisations in the state which have asked their members to be vigilant.
Nagaland is also on alert. The Naga Students’ Federation (NSF) said the influx of the illegal immigrants to Nagaland was expected to rise given the NRC publication in Assam.Except for the plains of Dimapur district, outsiders visiting the state are required to carry Inner Line Permit (ILP). The NSF slammed the state government for not bringing Dimapur under ILP purview.
“The impending exodus of illegal immigrants poses as the biggest demographic threat to the indigenous inhabitants of Nagaland. The exclusion of Dimapur from ILP purview has made it a safe haven for the illegal immigrants,” the NSF said. It warned that the Nagas would be outnumbered by the illegal immigrants, if the issue was not addressed urgently.
DMs get additional power in Assam’s NRC exercise
NEW DELHI: District magistrates in Assam are empowered to refer names of the people excluded from the final NRC and who prefer not to seek any redressal to foreigners’ tribunals, the Home Ministry has said. As many 300 tribunals have been set up in Assam where the people whose names were excluded from the final NRC can approach to establish their Indian citizenship.“In case no appeal is preferred, the DM may refer to the Tribunal for its opinion the question as to whether the person is a foreigner or not within the meaning of The Foreigners Act, 1946,” a home ministry notification said.