GUWAHATI: Union Home Minister Amit Shah is in Assam today, his first visit since the citizens’ list to identify illegal immigrants in the state was released. The National Register of Citizens or NRC had left out over 19 lakh people.
Mr Shah’s visit comes after Assam was declared a “Disturbed Area” for six months.
The Home Minister is holding meeting with the Chief Ministers and Governors of the North Eastern Council or NEC member states and is likely to review the situation in the state after the publication of the NRC. During his two-day visit, he will also attend a meeting of the BJP-led North East Democratic Alliance tomorrow.
The NEC is the top advisory body for development in the northeast, and for facilitating effective coordination among the member states.
This is also Amit Shah’s first visit to the northeastern state after becoming the Home Minister.
Earlier this year, Mr Shah, who had described illegal immigrants as “termites” had said earlier this year, while campaigning for the national election, that the party was committed to throw out infiltrators from across the country.
Many BJP leaders, however, have raised concerns over a large number of Bengali Hindus being left out of the NRC. Top BJP leader in Assam, Himanta Biswa Sarma, had made it clear that he didn’t think the NRC will be effective in removing illegal immigrants.
Most of those who haven’t produced adequate documents to prove their claims, according to officials; the government says they will not be declared illegal immediately. They have the option of appealing to Foreigners’ Tribunals and subsequently approach the courts.