Four million people in northern India have effectively lost their citizenship after their names were left out of a national database of registered citizens.

The list now includes only those who were able to prove they were in Assam state before 1971.

For the people who have been left out of this list, there is fear they might become stateless or even face deportation.

Narendra Modi's government argues they could not produce valid documents. But Indian leaders have assured them there will not be any immediate deportations and people can appeal to have their names registered. 

This all goes back to Bangladesh's 1971 war of independence. That is when hundreds of thousands of people fled to India to escape the fighting.

Many of them settled in the northeastern part of the country, mainly in Assam. So, have they become stateless? And will this create further division?


Presenter: Mohammed Jamjoom

Guests:

Rana Ayyub - Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute

Prem Shankar Jha - Former editor of the Hindustan Times

Aman Wadud - Lawyer and high court advocate

Source: Al Jazeera News