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Gauhati HC directs to release 'declared foreigners' in Assam in 7 days

By NS Desk | Health News | Posted on :   16-Apr-2020

Guwahati, April 16 (IANS) The Gauhati High Court has asked the Border Wing of the Assam Police to release on bail the "declared foreigners" in seven days to comply with the apex courts order on who have completed two years in detention camps, officials said on Thursday.

Referring to the Supreme Court's April 13 order for releasing the "declared foreigners", a division bench of the High Court comprising Justice Manojit Bhuyan and Justice Ajit Borthakur, passed the order on Wednesday in view of the global coronavirus outbreak.

An official of the Border Wing unit of the Assam Police said that hearing a suo-motu petition, the High Court asked the Special Director-General of Police (Border) to submit the number of people released when the matter would be taken up for hearing after 10 days.

The High Court directed the Superintendent of Police (Border) of all 33 districts to take necessary steps in line with the April 13 direction of the Supreme Court to release the "declared foreigners" on bail who are lodged in any of the six detention centres in Assam. The 4-page High Court order, which is available with IANS, has stipulated six conditions to release the "declared foreigners".

The conditions include, execution of bond with two sureties of Rs 5,000 each of Indian citizen, declaration of verifiable address of stay after release, capturing and storing of the biometrics of the iris of both eyes and all 10 fingerprints and photos in a secured database before release from the concerned detention centres, undertaking that the detenue shall report once in every week to the police station or outpost, undertaking that the detenue shall notify any change of his or her address to the police.

The High Court passed the order in view of the Supreme Court order considering the global outbreak of coronavirus and in order to arrest the spread of the disease, not only in prisons but also in the correctional homes, detention centres and protective homes. The Border Wing of the Assam Police has been tasked with detection of suspected "illegal immigrants" and produce them to any of over 100 existing quasi-judicial Foreigners' Tribunals, that decide on the status of the person identified, in order to be sent to a detention centre.

The judges of the High Court have observed that the Supreme Court had modified its last year's May 10 order to reduce the detention period of "declared foreigners" from three to two years and release them with two sureties of Rs 5,000 each instead of Rs one lakh each.

In pursuance to the Supreme Court's order, various state governments in the northeastern region have initiated the process to release thousands of prisoners on interim bail or PR bond to prevent the novel coronavirus pandemic inside the jails.



NS Desk

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