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NRC won’t affect India’s relations with Bangladesh: MEA

The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Thursday stated that the recent filing of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) for the state of Assam will not negatively impact the country’s relations with Bangladesh.

Addressing a presser, MEA spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said, “The Bangladesh Government has taken the view that the ongoing process is an internal matter of India. We do not apprehend any impact on our relationship with Bangladesh, which remains excellent.”

“We have been in close touch with Bangladesh Government, both prior to and following the issuance of the draft. At all points, we have repeatedly assured them that it is still a draft list, prepared under the orders of the Supreme Court and the process of identification of citizens of Assam is still underway,” Kumar added.

Nearly 40 lakh people were not recognised as citizens of India when the draft, which incorporated the names of 2.89 crore people out of 3.29 crore applicants, was released on July 30.

Ever since the draft was released, the Opposition has been at loggerheads with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led Centre and questioning as to the fate of the 40 lakh people.

However, Prateek Hajela, the State Coordinator of NRC, had issued a clarification on Sunday, saying that those left out of the NRC will not be “jailed or deported.”

He also said that the Supreme Court had clearly stated that nobody could take away their rights and that the process of filing objections by those whose names are not listed in the draft should be fair.

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