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Supreme Court: Expressing displeasure over the absence of Assam Chief Secretary Alok Kumar during a hearing on the plea seeking humane treatment to immigrants at detention centres, the  Court has asked the state government if “a non-bailable
warrant” should be issued against him.

“There is a reason why we wanted the Chief Secretary to be present. But he is not here. Should we issue a non-bailable warrant against him,”

The bench also observed that the state is dragging its feet in pursuing identification of migrants. After the conclusion of arguments, the CJI headed bench posted the matter for hearing on April 8, and directed Chief Secretary Kumar to be present in the court. Even during an earlier hearing, the Court had pulled up the Centre and Assam government over the deportation of illegal migrants from the state.

“It has become a joke and you haven’t done anything,”

The Court had also slammed Assam government for its laxity in acting against illegal migrants. Reprimanding the state government for inadequate functioning of foreigners’ tribunals, the bench had asked:

“What the state has done to tackle this serious problem.”

The Court was hearing a petition filed by social activist Harsh Mander, seeking the Court’s direction for humane treatment to immigrants held in detention centres in the state. It also submitted that the immigrants should be treated as refugees, pending their repatriation.

The matter will next be taken up on April 8.

(Source: ANI)


Also read:

SC asks Centre to provide details on Detention centres and Foreigners detained in Assam

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Supreme Court: The bench of Ranjan Gogoi, CJ and Sanjiv Khanna, JJ has directed the Centre to provide the details of the functional detention centres in Assam and the foreigners detained there during the last 10 years. The Court has also asked the authorities to apprise it of the year-wise details as to how many illegal immigrants, after being declared so by the Foreigners Tribunal functioning in Assam, were deported to their native countries in the last decade.

The said order of the Court came in a PIL filed by activist Harsh Mander through advocate Prashant Bhushan on the plight of foreigners in detention centres wherein it has been alleged that foreigners are kept in detention indefinitely just because they are not Indians and are treated as “illegal aliens”. Advocate Prashant Bhushan argued that these persons were facing prolonged detention, adding that they should be treated as refugees and released from the detention centres after imposing certain conditions.

The Court said that foreigners can not be kept in detention centres after being declared as illegal immigrants by tribunals if the Centre had not been able to arrive at a settlement with the countries where they were to be deported. It said:

“You can ask the neighbouring countries to accept their natives, but you cannot keep them in detention centres for all the times.”

The matter will now be taken up on 19.02.2019.

(Source: PTI)