As many as two National Register of Citizens (NRC) officials were arrested on Thursday for allegedly accepting bribe from woman to include her name in the citizenship list.
A team of Anti-Corruption Bureau arrested a field level officer Syed Shahjahan and an assistant local registrar of citizen registration Rahul Parasar, both posted at an NRC centre in Dispur locality of Guwahati. Both the officials were caught red-handed while accepting a bribe of Rs 10,000 from a woman named Kajari Ghosh Dutta, a resident of Ananda Nagar.
It is to be noted that Kajari Ghosh Dutta had earlier filed a complaint with the Anti-Corruption Bureau under the Directorate of Vigilance and Anti-Corruption, Assam.
In a statement, the police said, “The accused had demanded a bribe of Rs 10,000 for entering the name of the complainant in the draft NRC. The accused had highlighted some technical defects in her application and demanded a bribe to enter her name in the final draft of NRC.”
“Shahjahan was arrested while allegedly accepting Rs 10,000 from the complainant and Parasar was nabbed for his involvement in the crime,” the police added.
In the meantime, the NRC office issued a press statement and said, “The NRC officials at Ganeshguri centre of Dispur circle had no role to play in exclusion or inclusion of the complainant in the citizenship draft.”
“It is affirmed that any official found involved in any illegal activity will be punished as per law. However, preliminary findings indicate that the NRC officials at Ganeshguri NSK of Dispur circle have no role to play in the matter of inclusion or exclusion of the claimant/complainant,” the NRC office said.
The NRC office further stated that hearings related to the complainant’s entry or exclusion from the draft had already been completed in May at a different venue by another officer.
“It is reiterated that the system of NRC update is strong enough to ensure quality and will remain unaffected even in case of complicity by any official. The public, therefore, need not get worried with such incidents insofar as quality of NRC is concerned,” it added.
The National Register of Citizens (NRC), which was first prepared in 1951, is being updated in Assam in an effort to weed out illegal immigrants. The first draft released last year had excluded names of 40 lakh applicants. The final list of NRC will be published on July 31.
(With inputs from PTI)