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Khushboo Sharma

IWB Blogger

Parismita Singh Captures The Plight Of Those Excluded From NRC Draft In Her Graphic Novel

  • IWB Post
  •  August 30, 2019

The rhetoric of “outsiders” has been looming on the political landscape of Assam since the colonial era. The legacy data dynamics have put the citizenship and thus the lives of so many Assamese people in mid-air.

As per the final draft of the NRC published on 30 July 2018, 40, 07,717, people have been excluded from the list of 3.29 crore applicants. Out of these, there are 48,456 cases of married women, who were included in the first NRC draft on the basis of the submission of panchayat certificates as linkage documents, the only identity certificate that they have. However, they now stand excluded from the final draft.

A few weeks before July 31 2019, the SC agreed to push the deadline for the publication of the final version of Assam’s National Register of Citizens by a month. The list will now release tomorrow, on the August 31.

Parismita Singh, who is a graphic artist and writer, addresses the issue through her graphic novel ‘Kheli-Meli.’ She herself hails from Assam. Her stories often underline the remoteness of the Northeast. She has also edited a collection of writings and visual art by women from Northeastern India named ‘Masterpiece’.

“Proving you are your father’s daughter should be easy, but it isn’t in Assam,” writes Parismita in a column for Huffington Post.

Commenting on the huge number of women excluded from the final draft, Parismita writes, “The popular conspiracy theory is that officials and politicians need the numbers, the list needs to show that a substantial number of applicants have been rejected to prove that the NRC has indeed been successful in rooting out these “foreigners” from the rolls.”

“Someone has to go – why not the women?” she raises.

Parismita expresses that all these problems of life and death, belonging and alienation, “are what the commentariat call “procedural errors”, lapses, anomalies.”

She adds, “But how will these be rectified in time for the final list?”

She thus puts Kheli-Meli in the place of answers:img_2 (1)

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H/T: Huffington Post

Illustration Source: Parismita Singh

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