On Delimitation, Citizen’s Registry In Assam, Poll Panel Says No Link
People whose names were included in the 2001 census will be part of Assam’s delimitation exercise, the Chief Election Commissioner Rajiv Kumar said today, clarifying on opposition parties’ concerns about the 1.9 million people left out in the final draft of the National Register of citizens.
The updation of the National Register of Citizens and delimitation exercise are two separate legal processes and there is no bar on carrying them out simultaneously, Mr Kumar said.
The Poll Commission chief also said that 126 assembly seats and 14 parliamentary seats will remain the same, even after delimitation, indicating that the boundaries of the constituencies will be redrawn.
The supplementary NRC list published on August 31, 2019, had found more than 31.1 million people eligible to be included in the registry. It has also left out over 1.9 million people.
Over the last three days, the Election Commission met various stakeholders as part of the delimitation exercise in Assam.
Representatives of nine recognised political parties, three registered parties and over 60 civil society organizations, met the full team of the Election Commission.
Several opposition parties have questioned why the delimitation exercise is based on the 2001 one Census instead of the more recent 2011 Census. There have been allegations that the state’s ruling BJP is trying to tinker with Muslim-majority seats, which the BJP has denied.
The Election Commission has said that it will give time till April 15 for anyone to send further suggestions. After that, the draft will be published. One month’s time will be given on suggestions on the draft.