NRC Assam Current Affairs - 2020

Assam: No Govt. jobs for people with more than 2 children

On October 21, 2019, the Assam Cabinet decided that no Government jobs will be provided to persons with more than 2 children after 1 January 2021. In September 2017, the Assam government had passed the “Population and Women Empowerment Policy of Assam”. Under the policy, job candidates with two children alone would be eligible for government employment and the existing government staff were to strictly follow the two children family norms.

Significance: India

According to 2011 census Indian population is 121.08 crores. The current population of India, the second most populous country in the world is 133.92 crores (2017) according to World Bank. China being the most populous country has a population of 138 crores (2017) according to World Bank Data. However, the population density of China (375 per sq km) is less than the population density of India (416 per sq km)

Significance: Assam

Population of Assam is 3.09 crores. Population Density of Assam is 398 per sq km (greater than that of China). The population in Assam has grown exponentially higher as compared to other states. The history of population growth in Assam is as follows

  • 2013-31.86 million
  • 2104-32.28 million
  • 2015-33.41 million
  • 2016-33.90 million
  • 2017-34.92 million

It is clearly evident that the population in Assam has been growing by a million every year.

Reasons for Population Explosion in Assam

Migration is the major cause for the population explosion in Assam. Even in the past between 1901 and 2011, population in Assam has increased 9 times. The major explosion happened during the 1971 war. The prevailing conditions in Bangladesh during its liberation forced many Pakistani refugees to migrate to Assam. Illiteracy is another major cause for population explosion in Assam.

SC Verdict: Foreigners Tribunal decision will prevail over NRC

The Supreme Court of India has held that a Foreigner Tribunal’s order declaring a person as an illegal foreigner will be binding and will prevail over government decision to include or exclude name from National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Assam.

Key Highlights

  • Argument: The SC bench constituted of Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi and SC Justice Deepak Gupta and Justice Sanjiv Khanna unanimously distinguished between decisions of NRC) and of foreigners tribunals and upheld that the tribunal’s order being the quasi-judicial one will prevail.
  • Verdict: As per SC the persons whose names are not included in NRC in Assam can produce documents including ones related to their family tree and thus seek review of tribunal’s decision. As per SC it cannot create an appellate forum for those, declared as illegal foreigners by the foreigners tribunal, by using its power under Article 142 of Indian Constitution.
  • Outcome: If the name of a person, included in NRC in Assam is deleted on ground that he was a foreigner, then principle of ‘res-judicata’ (a judicially decided issue cannot be re-agitated) would apply on decision taken by foreigners tribunal. Thus a person who has been declared an illegal immigrant cannot seek re-decision (right of appeal) against exclusion or dropping of his name in normal circumstances.

About Foreigners (Tribunal) Order, 1964

  • The order was passed by Government of India (GoI) under section 3 of foreigners Act, 1946.
  • The GoI can constitute foreigners tribunals whenever required to look into question of whether a person is or not a foreigner within the meaning of Foreigners Tribunals act, 1946.
  • The Foreigners tribunal shall consist of persons having judicial experience as government may think fit to appoint.
  • It has powers of a civil court while trying a suit under code of civil procedure, 1908. It includes summoning any person, requiring any document and issuing commissions for examination of any witness.