New Delhi: 

As the Assam National Register of Citizens (NRC) was put out today, the BJP’s Manoj Tiwari demanded a similar exercise for Delhi to identify illegal immigrants, calling the situation in the capital “dangerous”. In the past, many leaders of the BJP have spoken about such lists in other parts of the country.

“The NRC is needed in Delhi as the situation is becoming dangerous. Illegal immigrants who have settled here are the most dangerous, we will implement NRC here as well,” Manoj Tiwari, the Delhi BJP chief, was quoted as telling news agency ANI. His “announcement” is significant ahead of the Delhi election next year.

This is not the first time that Mr Tiwari has expressed this view.

That such lists should be put out to weed out “outsiders” is in line with the BJP’s stated line. BJP president Amit Shah, who had pledged to eject “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.

But a top BJP leader in Assam, Himanta Biswa Sarma, has made it clear that he didn’t think the NRC will be effective in removing illegal immigrants. “We have lost hope in the present form of the NRC right after the draft. When so many genuine Indians are out, then how can you claim that this document is a red letter for the Assamese society,” Mr Sarma told local reporters on Friday. The BJP has expressed concern that many Hindus have been left out of the list and Bangladeshi immigrants have been able to produce forged documents.

Mr Sarma indicated that the Assam BJP government and the centre were working on a new plan.

The Assam citizen’s list, released amid security and a tense wait for many, has left out 19 lakh people. Most of these are people 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.

(With inputs from ANI)

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