New Delhi, March 17: The government has taken no decision till now to prepare a National Register of Citizens (NRC) at national level, Rajya Sabha was informed today. "Till now, the government has not taken any decision to prepare National Register of Indian Citizens (NRIC) at the national level," Union Minister of State for Home Affairs, Nityanand Rai said in a written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha.
Nityanand Rai made the same statement in Lok Sabha in February last year when protests against the NRC and the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) were raging across the country. While the government, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, said that no decision on nationwide NRC had been taken, Union Home Minister Amit Shah on more than one occasion asserted that a countrywide NRC exercise would be carried out.
"Aap chronology samajh lijiye (Understand the chronology). First, we will bring Citizenship Amendment Bill (now Citizenship Amendment Act) and after that, we will bring National Register of Citizens (NRC) and NRC will not only be for Bengal but for the entire country," Shah had declared at a press conference in April 2019. Protests were held against nationwide NRC in the context of the CAA which grants Indian citizenship to immigrants fleeing religious persecution in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan, but not if they are Muslims. Why Citizenship Amendment Act+NRC Raise Fear And Concerns: A Multi-Dimensional Take.
According to anti-CAA-NRC groups, while non-Muslims, left out of NRC, could have an option to obtain Indian citizenship through CAA, excluded Muslims would be treated as "doubtful" or deported or sent to detention centres.