The Supreme Court on Tuesday was faced with the question whether judicial determination of a person being a foreigner would stand superseded if the name of the same person is included in the draft/final NRC. The question was being considered by a Bench comprising Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, Justice Deepak Gupta and Justice Sanjiv Khanna. During the hearing, the State of Assam and the Centre submitted that the judicial verdict would prevail, notwithstanding the executive exercise of the preparation of the NRC list. They relied on the provisions of paragraph 3(2) of the Schedule of the Citizenship (Registration of Citizens and Issue of National Identity Cards) Rules, 2003.
However, Senior Counsel Kapil Sibal, appearing for the petitioners, asserted that if the name of a person included in the NRC is deleted on the ground that he was a foreigner or an illegal migrant, he would have a right of appeal or right to approach the appropriate forum, as the case may be, against the exclusion/dropping of his name from the NRC.
Mr. Sibal added that though the statute may not have provided a remedy of appeal against such exclusion, the remedy may be carved out by the Supreme Court in exercise of its jurisdiction under Article 142 of the Constitution of India. The arguments on the issue will continue at 3 pm on March 28. Notably, another matter relating to NRC has been listed for March 28. The question posed before the Apex Court in that petition concerns the fate of people whose names appear in the electoral roll but are not included in the final NRC.