Solicitor General Tushar Mehta on Friday pleaded to the Supreme Court for extension of the July 31 deadline for the finalisation of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Assam, contending there is a growing perception that lakhs of illegal migrants have been included in the list.
"Illegal immigrants have to be dealt with severely. India cannot be the refugee capital of the world," he submitted before a division bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi.
Appearing for the Centre and the Assam government, Mehta, said, "There is a growing perception that lakhs of illegal immigrants have been included in the NRC list in alleged collusion with local NRC officials in Assam."
Seeking an extension of the deadline set by the apex court, he asserted, "We need to have a relook at the process for sample verification of those included in the NRC list."
After hearing the senior lawyer, the bench fixed July 23 as the next date of hearing.
On July 16, the court had declined to grant an urgent hearing to the plea.
The court is monitoring the NRC exercise aimed at identifying illegal immigrants in Assam, which has been facing an influx of people from Bangladesh for decades. The NRC containing the names of Indian citizens was first prepared in 1951.
When the draft NRC was published on July 30, 2018, there was a huge controversy over the exclusion of 40.7 lakh people from it. The draft NRC included the names of 2.9 crore people out of the total 3.29 crore applications. (ANI)