02, Nov 2019 | Sanchita Kadam
The process of setting those detainees free from detention camps who have completed more than 3 years in such camps is on going and CJP is in the process of making a list of such detainees so that more of such detainees can be freed in accordance with the May 2019 order of the Supreme Court.
There are many stories of people who are languishing in detention camps despite of having submitted valid legacy documents before a Foreigners Tribunal. One such case is of Sahera Khatun, of Satibar Gaon in Chirang District of Assam. After her case was heard before a Foreigners Tribunal in Chirang, she was sent to a detention camp and has spent 3 years 2 months in the camp until now.
Over four million people have been left out of the NRC draft, most of them from socio-economically backward communities. Now CJP, drawing from its previous experience in providing legal aid in Gujarat, will step in with a multi-faceted team of lawyers and volunteers to ensure that these people receive a fair chance while filing claims across 18 of the worst affected districts. Your contribution can help cover the costs of a legal team, travel, documentation and technological expenses. Please donate generously here.
Sahera had submitted valid legacy documents along with her written statement before the Foreigners Tribunal such as NRC details of her father, Electoral roll of 1965 in which her father’s name was included as a voter, among other documents. Despite of these documents, her appeal before the Foreigners Tribunal failed and she was sent to a detention camp.
There is however some relief to detainees like Sahera Khatun, which came from the Supreme Court in May 2019. In its order, the Supreme Court granted conditional relief to detainees who have spent more than 3 years in detention camp. The conditions for releasing a detainee laid down by the Court are as follows:
(a) Execution of bond with two sureties of Rs.1,00,000/- (Rupees one lakh only) each of Indian citizens;
(b) He or she specifies verifiable address of stay after release;
(c) Biometric of his/her iris (if possible) and all ten fingerprints and photos shall be captured and stored in a secured database before release from the detention centres. He or she shall report once every week to the Police Station specified by the Foreigners Tribunal;
(d) He or she shall notify any change of his or her address to the specified Police Station on the same day, and
(e) A quarterly report to be submitted by the Superintendent of Police (Border) to the Foreigners Tribunal regarding appearance of such released declared foreigner to concerned Police Station and in case of violation of condition, the DFN will be apprehended and produced before Foreigners Tribunal.
In August, around 13 people had been released from detention camps in Goalpara, Tezpur and Kokrajhar. As more and more detainees complete this 3 year period in detention camps, CJP is helping such detainees to be set free from detention camps on the basis of the Supreme Court order of May 2019. CJP’s District Volunteer Motivator (DVM) visited Sahera Khatun in the detention camp and CJP with the help of its DVMs is filling out forms and completing the formalities so that other detainees like Sahera Khatun who have spent more than 3 years in detention camp can be set free.