The National Register of Citizens is a register of all Indian citizens whose creation is mandated by the 2003 amendment of the Citizenship Act, 1955.
The conferment of a person as a citizen of India is governed by the Part II of the Constitution of India.
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Its purpose is to document all the legal citizens of India so that the illegal migrants can be identified and deported.
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It has been implemented for the state of Assam starting in 2013–2014.
Assam is a state in northeastern India, situated south of the eastern Himalayas along the Brahmaputra and Barak River valleys.
The Government of India plans to implement it for the rest of the country in 2021.
The Government of India is the union government created by the constitution of India as the legislative, executive and judicial authority of the union of 29 states and seven union territories of a constitutionally democratic republic.
Assam, being a border state with unique problems of illegal immigration, had a register of citizens created for it in 1951 based on the 1951 census data.
The Illegal Migrants Act, 1983 was then passed by the Parliament, creating a separate tribunal process for identifying illegal migrants in Assam.
The Supreme Court of India struck it down as unconstitutional in 2005, after which the Government of India agreed to update the Assam NRC.
The Supreme Court of India is the highest judicial forum and final court of appeal under the Constitution of India, the highest constitutional court, with the power of constitutional review.
Following unsatisfactory progress on the process of updating the Assam NRC for over a decade, the Supreme Court started directing and monitoring the process in 2013.
The final updated NRC for Assam, published on 31 August 2019, contained 31 million names out of its population of 33 million, leaving out 1.9 million applicants, rendering them potentially stateless.
The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party, which has championed the NRC exercise, did not find the results meeting its expectations.
The Bharatiya Janata Party is the current ruling political party of the Republic of India.
It believes that several legitimate citizens were excluded while many illegal migrants were included.
The BJP has promised to implement the NRC for all of India in its election manifesto for the 2019 Indian general election.
The 2019 Indian general election was held in seven phases from 11 April to 19 May 2019 to constitute the 17th Lok Sabha.
On 19 November 2019, Home minister Amit Shah declared in the Rajya Sabha of the Indian parliament that the NRC would be implemented throughout the country.
Amit Anilchandra Shah is an Indian politician currently serving as the Minister of Home Affairs.
The Rajya Sabha or Council of States is the upper house of the bicameral Parliament of India.
According to the Citizenship Rules, 2003, the central government can issue an order to prepare the National Population Register and create the NRC based on the data gathered in it.
The 2003 amendment further states that the local officials would then decide if the person's name will be added to the NRC or not, thereby deciding his citizenship status.
No new rules or laws are needed to conduct this exercise in the whole of India.
The Citizenship Act, 2003 added the following clause to the Citizenship Act, 1955:
Issue of national identity cards.
The Central Government may compulsorily register every citizen of India and issue national identity card to him.