FIR Against Former Assam NRC Project Manager After Data Vanishes From Website

The names of 3,11,21,004 persons were found eligible and 19,06,657 persons were excluded from the final NRC list including those who did not submit claims

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An FIR was lodged against a former National Register of Citizens (NRC) official in Guwahati, a day after the data stored online on NRC went missing from cloud.

The case against the former NRC Project Manager, Ajupi Baruah was lodged in Paltan Bazar Police Station of Guwahati.

The FIR was filed against the official by the office of the Assam NRC coordinator on February 12th, 2020 for not “sharing” the password for the central data record system before quitting her job.

As per the FIR filed by NRC executive director Chandana Mahanta, Baruah resigned and handed over the charge on November 11th, 2019 but did not share the password of the two official email IDS. A copy of the FIR is available with Time8.

“Unauthorised possession of the passwords by her (the woman employee) is in violation of the Section 5 of the Official Secrets Act, 1923, as it is related to national security and integrity,” it stated.

The data of the final NRC list, published last August, has vanished from the website of the state NRC (nrcassam.nic.in). The data was published as mandated by the Supreme Court. The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) said that the data is safe and the problem is “being resolved soon”.

Though the MHA blamed “technical issue”, the Assam NRC authorities claimed non-renewal of the contract with IT firm Wipro as the reason for the data’s disappearance.

On the other hand, Assam Public Works (APW), a local NGO, has lodged an FIR against Prateek Hajela, the former state NRC coordinator. Hajela got transferred to Madhya Pradesh in November last year following Supreme Court’s directives.

According to several media reports, the woman employee resigned from her post within days of Hajela’s transfer to Madhya Pradesh.

The APW has accused Hajela of tampering with the NRC final list, violation of Supreme Court’s directives, forgery and cybercrime among others.

The names of 3,11,21,004 persons were found eligible and 19,06,657 persons were excluded from the final NRC list including those who did not submit claims.

Political parties, several organisations have vociferously expressed their unhappiness with the final exclusion figures. They claimed that a large number of indigenous people were excluded from the final NRC list.

Photo credit: multimediadimension.com