Nellie, India: Thirty-six years after losing her parents, sister and a four-year-old daughter in one of India's worst sectarian killings, Abdul Suban says he always tries to prove that he is a citizen of the Hindu majority.
Suban is one of hundreds of thousands of Bengali-speaking Muslims categorized as "dubious voters", who will not find their name in a National Citizens Register (NRC) that the border state of Assam, in the northeast, will publish on Monday.
"If the government has decided to mark us as foreigners, what can we do?" Said the 60-year-old man. "NRC is trying to finish us – our people are dead here, but we will not leave this place."
Suban was sitting with his wife at their home a few hundred yards from a vast rice paddy where, In 1983, dozens of people were prosecuted and killed. crowds armed with machetes who sought to harass Muslim immigrants. He survived by running as hard as he could and hiding behind a bush for days
Work on the citizen registry accelerated under the government of Prime Minister Bharatiya Janata Party ( BJP) by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. According to critics, the BJP's Hindu-first campaign has become more strident, according to critics, playing on its base with divisive programs such as the Assam citizenship test, already a dustbin of ethnic and religious tensions.
Elsewhere In the north of the country, lynchers of Muslim cattle dealers grew up under the Modi regime in the country where many Hindus view cows as sacred, which aggravates social divisions.
The BJP denies that lynchings have a connection to power. Modi has at least twice publicly spoken against the vigils of the cows.
Several other survivors of the Nellie massacre, who killed about 2,000 more people from a dozen villages, recounted bodies buried in a mass. Serious now partly under the water.
They said that they hoped that the publication of the NCR list on Monday would not ignite further violence. The citizenship test is the culmination of years of often violent agitations by Assamese, demanding the removal of foreigners whom they accuse of taking jobs and resources in the country. state of 33 million residents, known for its tea plantations and "The NRC is extremely important for the Assamese people to feel protected," said Santanu Bharali, the legal adviser to BJP's chief minister of Assam
"It is a moral victory, the Assamese ethnicity has always maintained the presence of foreigners and that will prove that."
But the opposition party and the defenders Rights say the government is abusing the registry to target even legal Indian Muslim citizens who have traditionally voted for non-BJP parties. The BJP and NRC authorities repeatedly denied these allegations
To be recognized as Indian citizens, all Assam residents were required to produce documents proving that they or their families lived in the country before March 24. 1971.
Suban says that he and his father were born in Assam, and showed Reuters a dirty yellow document that showed his father's name in the voters' list in Assam for 1965, before the deadline. The local border police refused to discuss individual cases, but all documents provided by suspected illegal immigrants were not valid.
Hundreds of thousands of people fled Bangladesh to India during the Pakistani War of Independence. 1970s Most of them settled in Assam, which has a border of nearly 270 km with Bangladesh.
The migrants included many Hindus, but Modi gave orders stating that no Hindu or member of other minorities from Pakistan or Bangladesh would be considered an illegal immigrant even if they entered in the country without valid documents before 2014.
"The only goal of the BJP is to do communal politics, including through the NRC," said MP Ripun Bora. NRC was monitored by the highest court in the country and there was no question of discrimination based on religion.
Following the outcry of rights groups on the harassment of Muslims in Assam, Interior Minister Rajnath Singh declared that
Singh also reiterated that people found their names missing on the list could raise objections and appeals, and said that they would not be thrown out of Rivals say that Modi's government being disillusioned for not having succeeded in creating jobs and prospering, it will intensify religious mobilization across the country
FEAR IN THE CAMPAIGN
The NRC's first project, released on December 31, confirmed the citizenship of 19 million people, leading to jubilation for some and grief among others.
The NRC office, however, told the Supreme Court this month that 150,000 people from the first list, married women, would be withdrawn from the next, mainly because they were providing false information or giving false information. inadmissible documents.
Assam political activists say that most of them are Bengali speaking Muslims. NRC Chief Prateek Hajjela, whose office has processed 66 million documents and spent nearly $ 180 million throughout the NRC process, declined to comment on the religion of those who would be struck off the register
We are doing an unprecedented exercise. and if there are course corrections that need to be made, we will need to do that, "said Hajjela, who is guarded 24 hours a day by a police team.
Hajjela said the most of the 126,000 called dubious voters, and about 150,000 of their descendants, would be excluded from the CNR pursuant to a court order.
One of them is the son of Nellie farmer Suban Nabi Hussain, 28 years, who said he voted in two Indian elections "We are afraid," said Hussain, his wife looking at their mud-coated bamboo, their nine-month-old daughter in their arms. "Terrible things happened to our family a we do not want repetition. "