Citizenship list in Indian state sparks fears for millions

Arab News
Friday . August 30, 2019

August 30, 2019

Activists said the list is to protect Assam’s indigenous people regardless of religion
The draft version of the list left off about 4.1 million out of 32 million residents

NEW DELHI: India will publish Saturday a controversial citizens list that advocates say will help rectify decades of unchecked illegal immigration into the northeastern state of Assam.

Critics fear it will leave millions of people stateless. The Hindu nationalist-led government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi backs the project, and has vowed to roll it out nationwide.

Some view the National Register of Citizens as an attempt to deport millions of India’s minority Muslim population. But activists who have been fighting for such a list for decades say that it’s simply to protect Assam’s indigenous people, whether Hindu, Muslim or tribal.

The draft version of the register released in June left off about 4.1 million of the state’s 32 million residents, leading some to flee and others to suicide.




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