Assam: Cleanest village in state not spared NRC exclusion
GUWAHATI | August 7, 2018:
The final draft of National Register of Citizens (NRC) has generated waves which hasn't spared even the cleanest village Rangsapara in Assam.
Within the next 48-hours, eight of the indigenous inhabitants whose names have been dropped from the final draft are now grappling to make their claims at the local NRC offices.
Last year, the state government had declared Rangsapara as the cleanest village in Assam.
The village is dominated by the Garo community and is located on the fringes of Goalpara district, bordering Meghalaya.
In the next 48 hours, the eight inhabitants, along with the Robert John Momin, the village headman and Ratna Nath, the president of Rangsapara gaon panchayat, will head to the local NRC office to make their claims, rectify any spelling errors of their names and surnames, and provide more legacy data.
"Eight inhabitants of Rangsapara have found their names missing from the final draft of the NRC. As they are not literate, it is a cause of concern for them. They are part of the state's indigenous communities and it is not justified that their names should be excluded from the final draft of the NRC. I visited the village on Sunday and found that there could be some error in the linkage of legacy data, names misspelt or some documents submitted wrongly. The problem also could have arisen as their ability to speak Assamese is less," said Nath.
The 100-year-old picturesque village of 88 households with its quaint lifestyle and strict adherence to cleanliness and hygiene shot to limelight in early 2017 when it got the cleanest village tag and was awarded Rs 5 lakh.
But the brush with NRC has caused a bit of a worry for Momin.
"On August 8, I will visit the NRC office and ask what went wrong. I don't know what happened. We are the original inhabitants of this village," said Momin.
The village also has a strict code against habits like smoking, drinking, alcohol and others. The village imposes a fine of Rs 5,001 on those who are found smoking or drinking.
For close to two decades, the village hasn't witnessed any crimes.
Church leaders visit every house in the village and provide counselling to households to iron out petty issues.