Today, the Supreme Court again emphasized saying the Assam authorities must present the final version of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) on August 31. The NRC intends to identify illegal immigrants. The Supreme Court had extended the NRC deadline from July 31 to August 31 earlier this month.

Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi said that “There will be no end to criticism of our judgment every morning. Our orders, actions and judgments are debated every time. We refuse to go into (that)… Let them do what they want, but we want the NRC out by August 31,” he added.

The NRC coordinator was asked by the top court to submit a note on controversial issues, so orders in that regard can be passed on Tuesday. Opposition leaders and civil society have written to Chief Justice Gogoi, bringing to his notice the “panicky situation” created by “suspicious and mischievous” re-verification notices served by NRC authorities.

A re-verification process has been arranged for those who appeared in the draft NRC published last year. At that time many complained that they were given just 24 to 48 hours to appear for re-verification at NRC Seva Kendras located over 500 km away from their hometowns.

The new orders sparked panic among people as they hurriedly boarded buses, trains and hired vehicles to reach towns as far as Jorhat, Charaideo, Sivasagar and Golaghat. Four people were killed and over 40 injured in road accidents that allegedly occurred in their rush to reach the re-verification centers.

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