The Supreme Court of India (File Pic)
The Supreme Court of India (File Pic)

SC directs Assam govt to suggest measures for release of foreigners kept in detention

ANI | Updated: Apr 09, 2019 20:13 IST

New Delhi [India], Apr 9 (ANI): The Supreme Court on Tuesday directed Assam’s Chief Secretary Alok Kumar to file an affidavit suggesting measures it intends to take for the release of those kept in detention centres in Assam.
A bench headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi comprising of Justices Deepak Gupta and Sanjiv Khanna said that the foreigners cannot be detained for an “indefinite period” in the detention centres and directed the Assam government to inform the court about the methods authorities to consider releasing them.
“These 900 odd people, how long will be the imprisonment? What we are suggesting release them on sureties... Please tell us, out of these 900 how many are you releasing?” the Bench told Assam Chief Secretary who was present in the court pursuant to the court’s earlier direction.
CJI was hearing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by an activist Harsh Mander, seeking directions for humane treatment to immigrants lodged in the detention centres in the state.
The plea also underlined that the immigrants must be treated as refugees.
On February 19, Advocate Prashant Bhushan, appearing for petitioner Mander told the bench that detention of foreigners has gone up to 8-9 years and many persons have completed their detention but still lodged in the detention centre.
On April 1, the apex court had expressed displeasure over the absence of Assam Chief Secretary during the hearing.
It had also asked the state government if “a Non-Bailable Warrant” (NBW) should be issued against him.
The court had also observed that the state is dragging its feet in pursuing identification of migrants.
During an earlier hearing, the top court had pulled up at 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 bench had said.
It had also slammed the state government for its laxity in acting against the illegal immigrants. (ANI)