Lok sabha Polls Current Affairs - 2019

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Exclusion from draft Assam NRC will not affect voting rights: ECI

The Election Commission of India (ECI) has stated before the Supreme Court that exclusion of names of persons from draft National Registry of Citizens (NRC) in Assam will not affect their voting rights in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls provided their names feature in the electoral rolls.

Petition before the Supreme Court

Petition filed by Gopal Seth and Susanta Sen, residents of Assam feared that people would lose their voting rights due to the ongoing exercise of National Registry of Citizens. The petition highlighted five categories of people:

  • Persons whose names were deleted from the voter list which includes names of those appeared in the draft NRC published on July 30, 2018.
  • People whose names were not included in the complete draft NRC, but they subsequently filed claims for inclusion of their names in it.
  • People who have been declared as foreigners by the foreigners’ tribunal as well as the Guwahati High Court. The order which has been stayed by the apex court.
  • People who had already been declared foreigners by the foreigners’ tribunal and such declarations were set aside by the apex court.
  • People whose names have not been included in the draft NRC, but other members of their families, including parents, have been included in the NRC and they have filed their claims for the inclusion of their names.

Allaying the fears the ECI has assured that exclusion of names of persons from draft NRC in Assam will not affect their voting rights in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls and sought the dismissal of the petition.

The Supreme Court asked the ECI to provide data about the addition and deletion of names from voters’ list as revised in January for 2017, 2018 and 2019. The case for posted for further hearing on March 28.