Lucknow (IANS) Uttar Pradesh Director General of Police (DGP) O. P. Singh has asked all district police chiefs to identify Bangladeshis and 'other foreigners' so that they can be deported. This is being seen as an unofficial launch of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Uttar Pradesh.
In his letter to the district police chiefs, the DGP has said that "this move was crucial for internal security".
The deportation of unauthorised persons identified in the exercise will be "time-bound and monitored by senior officials", he said in his letter.
The Uttar Pradesh police have been ordered to comb transport hubs and slum clusters on the outskirts of their districts and verify all documents produced by anyone appearing suspicious.
The police have also been asked to track down the government employees who may have helped prepare the fake documents for the "foreigners and illegal residents".
Fingerprints of people identified as Bangladeshis or other foreigners will be taken. Focussing on a large floating population in the state, the police have told construction companies to keep records identity proofs of all labourers.
Last month, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath had praised the Assam NRC and had said that he would launch a similar move in his state if need be. In an interview, he had said that the Assam exercise was important for "national security".
Uttar Pradesh, according to sources, has a large population of migrants from Bangladesh and Nepal, with which it shares a highly porous border.
"A sizeable section of this population is involved in drug and illegal arms trade and work as couriers. Identifying them and taking action against them will also improve the law and order situation.
"Previous governments have not acted against them due to vote bank politics," said a senior official.