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Assam: 20 lakh Muslims likely to lose nationality

Assam: 20 lakh Muslims likely to lose nationality

New Delhi: The percentage of Muslim population in Assam is 34 pc; the majority of them are Bengali Muslims who have settled here from the past 100 years. Most of them are poor, illiterate and agricultural labours, but RSS, ruling BJP and their like-minded local parties say that lakhs of illegal infiltrators from Bangladesh have settled in Assam.

Election Commission has marked them in the voters’ list as ‘doubtful voters’, who could not produce proof of their citizenship.

A list of all residents of Assam is being prepared under the supervision of Supreme Court for identification of illegal Bangladeshi infiltrators. The final list of National Register for Citizens (NRC) will be released in June.

State Coordinator NRC, Shri Prateek Hajela told that ‘D voters or those who have been declared foreigners will not be included in the NRC. Besides 29 lakh women have submitted Panchayat certificate, their nationality will also be scrutinised. He says it is hard to say how many people will be removed from citizenship and nationality. This is a test whose result is inappropriate to declare now. According to civil society and human rights groups, lakhs of Bengali Muslims can be expelled after the NRC is released.

Abdul Batin Khandkar of Justice Forum says the number of D voters and declared foreigners is nearly 5 lakh; their children would be around 15 lakh. They will not be included in the list. He fears that at least 20 lakh Bengali Muslims will be deprived of citizenship and nationality.