'No voter's name to be excluded on the basis of NRC'

'No voter's name to be excluded on the basis of NRC'

The Election Commission on Tuesday told the Supreme Court that not a single voter's name has been deleted from the electoral roll on the basis of his or her name not having been included in the draft National Register for Citizens prepared in Assam. DH file photo

The Election Commission on Tuesday told the Supreme Court that not a single voter's name has been deleted from the electoral roll on the basis of his or her name not having been included in the draft National Register for Citizens prepared in Assam.

A bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices Deepak Gupta and Sanjiv Khanna took into record submission by senior advocate Vikas Singh appearing for the poll panel, along with its secretary.

The court, however, said, "a question looms large in preparation of the final NRC to be published on July 31, 2019, what would happen to those whose do not appear there but are included in the electoral roll."

The top court asked the poll panel to file an affidavit by March 27.

It also asked the EC to furnish details of the names included in the electoral roll on January 1, 2017, 2018 and 2019 in Assam.

Singh also submitted before the court no voter's name was deleted on the basis of his or her name has not been published in the draft NRC.

He also contended the names of petitioners two Assam-based residents, Gopal Seth and Susanta Sen, have not been deleted. He sought a direction to dismiss the plea.

During the hearing, the court quizzed the EC's secretary on the number of people included in Assam's electoral roll.

"We want to know the numbers of electors in each of constituency in Assam, addition and deletion," the bench asked.

"You say it is a continuous process, what is the number of additions since January, this year. After publication of final NRC on July 31, 2019, what would you do," the bench further asked.

Singh, appearing for the EC, said he would file a detailed affidavit.

"The petitioner's names have been published. We have said anybody's name would not be deleted in voters list during the publication of NRC," he said.

The PIL alleged that several categories of persons in Assam have been deprived of voting rights ahead of the Lok Sabha polls.