Assam NGO Intervenes In SC Suggesting New Standard Operating Procedure For Foreigners Tribunals

Assam NGO Intervenes In SC Suggesting New Standard Operating Procedure For Foreigners Tribunals

Suggesting a new 'Standard Operating Procedure(SOP)' for the Foreigners Tribunals dealing with the appeals against exclusions from the NRC, an Assam based NGO has filed an intervention application in the Supreme Court.

The application is filed by Brahmaputra Valley Civil Society in the petition filed by All Assam Minority Students Union challenging the Foreigner's (Tribunals) Amendment Order, 2019.

According to the Society, the new SOP ("SOP For The Adjudication of Appeals by the Foreigners Tribunals For Those Excluded From The NRC") will advance the cause of justice more than the existing SOP devised by the State NRC Coordinator.

The application suggests an SOP which allows for production of a new 'legacy document' before the Foreigners Tribunal which was not allowed to be produced at the NRC stage.

"It sometimes happens that a legacy document of a wrongly identified ancestor was produced by mistake or inadvertently. When the claimant attempted to withdraw that legacy document and produce the legacy document of the correctly identified ancestor, this was not permitted on account of Rule 4(2) of Annexure A1. This has given rise to the exclusion of genuine citizens. The mistake in the identification of ancestors was due to the illiteracy of the claimants combined with a lack of checking facilities available at the NSK (NRC Seva Kendra) where only digital versions were available and there were no printed copies available for checking. As a result of the confusion created by a large number of identical and similar names, some mistakes took place in the identification of ancestors. Hence in the new SOP at Annexure A3, there is a provision for change in legacy persons.", the application states.

The Society has also suggested further modifications to the existing SOP for making the adjudication would be fair, just, reasonable and transparent and in accordance with the principles of natural justice. It has prayed that the new SOP be accepted by the SC for application to Foreigners Tribunal.

All Assam Minority Student's Union (AAMSU) has filed the petition under Article 32 of the Constitution challenging the constitutional validity of the Foreigner's (Tribunals) Amendment Order, 2019 which was issued by the Central Government on May 30th, 2019, in pursuance of its power under Section 3 of the Foreigner's Act, 1946.

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Read the newly suggested SOP