Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad has said that the government will follow a proper legal process on the National Register of Citizens (NRC). Speaking to The Sunday Express, Prasad said states will be consulted before taking any decision on the proposed pan-India exercise.
Stating that nothing will be kept secret on NRC, Prasad said, “A position has to be taken. There is a legal process. First a decision, second a notification, then the process, the verification, the objection, the hearing of the objection, right of appeal. There will be a consultation with the state government, feedback will be taken. If anything is to be done, it will be done publicly.”
When asked whether the National Population Register (NPR) data will be used for the NRC, the Minister said “some may be used or some may not be used”.
His remark comes in the backdrop of Home Minister Amit Shah’s statement that the NPR and NRC were governed by different laws and NPR data will now be used for NRC. “There is no connection between the two processes (NPR and NRC), nor can they be used in each other’s survey. NPR data can never be used for NRC. Even the laws are different…I assure all the people, especially from the minorities, that NPR is not going to be used for NRC. It’s a rumour,” he told ANI.
Asked why there is a need for the NPR, Prasad said that it is required to frame policies for the delivery of welfare schemes. He said Census details of individuals cannot be made public to any authority.
Almost all the opposition states including Bihar, led by BJP ally JD(U), have opposed the implementation of a pan-India NRC. West Bengal and Kerala have even said that they will not allow the NPR as it might lead to an NRC.
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Source: Financial Express