File photo: Himanta Biswa Sarma

Senior Assam minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on December 23 said that if the state government was not satisfied with Supreme Court verdict on its plea over the updated National Register of Citizens (NRC) for the state, it will pursue the matter in a different forum.

Addressing a press conference in Guwahati, Sarma also reiterated the BJP-led Assam government’s rejection of the NRC in the present form.

“We have to request the Centre to complete the NRC process here, irrespective of a countrywide NRC or not,” he said.

Stating that “as of now, the state government is not satisfied with the NRC”, he added, “We have to wait for the Supreme Court verdict. If we do not get justice from the Supreme Court, we have to pursue in different forum.”

He said the state government has sought for 20 per cent re-verification in border districts and if the Supreme Court allows it, the state government will carry out the exercise and submit the report to the apex court.

“If we detect huge anomaly, then we will appeal for complete re-verification,” he added, reiterating that the “Assam government doesn’t accept the present NRC”.

Further claiming that “Assam NRC and national NRC are different”, the North East Democratic Alliance (NEDA) convener said, “The NRC in Assam is happening as per a 2005 decision during a meeting by then-Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, the Assam government and the All Assam Students’ Union. The BJP government is only implementing it. The credit goes to them.”

The final and updated NRC for Assam was published on August 31 this year, with names of 3.11 crore applicants included in it and 19 lakh applicants left out.

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