In northeast India, the politics of citizenship flares anew

People whose names were left out in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft stand to collect forms to file appeals in Mayong, 45 kilometers (28

People whose names were left out in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft stand to collect forms to file appeals in Mayong, 45 kilometers (28

People whose names were left out in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft stand in a queue to collect forms to file appeals in Mayong, 45 kilo

People whose names were left out in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft stand in a queue to collect forms to file appeals in Mayong, 45 kilo

People whose names were left out in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft stand in a queue to collect forms to file appeals in Mayong, 45 kilo

People whose names were left out in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft stand in a queue to collect forms to file appeals in Mayong, 45 kilo

A soldier stands guard as people, whose names or whose family members names were left out in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft, collect fo

A soldier stands guard as people, whose names or whose family members names were left out in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft, collect fo

A man whose name was left out in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft gives his thumb print as he collects forms to file an appeal in Mayong,

A man whose name was left out in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft gives his thumb print as he collects forms to file an appeal in Mayong,

A man whose name was left out in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft, looks at the form he had earlier filled as he stands to receive forms

A man whose name was left out in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft, looks at the form he had earlier filled as he stands to receive forms

People whose names did not appear in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft discusses with an officer as they arrive to collect forms to file a

People whose names did not appear in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft discusses with an officer as they arrive to collect forms to file a

People whose names did not appear in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft stand in a queue to collect forms to file appeals in Mayong, 45 kil

People whose names did not appear in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft stand in a queue to collect forms to file appeals in Mayong, 45 kil

An elderly man, whose name did not appear in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft, stands in a queue to collect forms to file appeals in Mayo

An elderly man, whose name did not appear in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft, stands in a queue to collect forms to file appeals in Mayo

Kismat Ali, whose wife's name did not appear on the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft,  shows a form he collected to file an appeal in Mayong,

Kismat Ali, whose wife's name did not appear on the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft, shows a form he collected to file an appeal in Mayong,

A woman whose name did not appear on the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft arrives to collect forms to file an appeal in Mayong, 45 kilometers

A woman whose name did not appear on the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft arrives to collect forms to file an appeal in Mayong, 45 kilometers

In this Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018 photo, Pratima Namo Das, 22, right, and her mother-in-law Tara Namo Das, 45, cook inside the family house in Mayong, 45

In this Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018 photo, Pratima Namo Das, 22, right, and her mother-in-law Tara Namo Das, 45, cook inside the family house in Mayong, 45

In this Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018 photo, school children walk on a road in Mayong, 45 kilometers (28 miles) east Gauhati, India. A draft list of citizens

In this Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018 photo, school children walk on a road in Mayong, 45 kilometers (28 miles) east Gauhati, India. A draft list of citizens

In this Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018 photo, Hindu farmer Khitish Namo Das, 50, who insists he was born in India, works at his house in Mayong, 45 kilometers

In this Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018 photo, Hindu farmer Khitish Namo Das, 50, who insists he was born in India, works at his house in Mayong, 45 kilometers

In this Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018 photo, Ekadashi Biswas, 50, who says her name does not appear on the National Register of Citizens list, stands outside

In this Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018 photo, Ekadashi Biswas, 50, who says her name does not appear on the National Register of Citizens list, stands outside

MAYONG, India (AP) — Tens of thousands of people left off a draft list of Indian citizens have begun picking up forms to file appeals across the northeastern state of Assam, wading into a byzantine legal and bureaucratic process that many fear could lead to detention, expulsion or years in limbo.

A draft list of citizens in Assam, released in July, put nearly 4 million people on edge to prove their Indian nationality.

Just across the border from Bangladesh, Assam has a population of roughly 33 million, with a little over one-third of them Muslims.

Many say the state is overrun with illegal migrants. The politics of citizenship — overlaid with questions of religion, ethnicity and illegal immigration — now swirls in a state where such questions have a long and bloody past.