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SC directs Centre to deport 17 foreigners detained in Assam transit camps

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Guwahati, May 16: The Supreme Court has directed the central government to take steps to immediately deport 17 foreigners detained in transit camps of Assam, considering that there are no pending cases registered against them.

A bench of the apex court, while hearing the matter pertaining to the condition of detention centres in Assam on Thursday, took note of the report submitted by the Assam Legal Services Authority Committee, which informed the bench that four among such foreigners were detained beyond a period of two years and that the report on the facilities at the detention centre has not been furnished.

“We direct the Assam State Legal Services Authority to visit the detention centres of declared foreigners in the State of Assam and ascertain from the records maintained in detention centres how many declared foreigners have been detained in the said detention centres for a period of more than two years,” the bench ordered.

“After completing this exercise, the Assam State Legal Services Authority shall also constitute a team to visit the detention centres with a view to find out the facilities which are made available to the declared foreigners in the detention centre,” the bench stated.

Notably, individuals with doubtful citizenship and deemed foreigners are kept in such detention centres.

“We are of the view that the Union of India must take immediate steps for deporting these 17 declared foreigners as it is not the case that there are offences registered against them. Priority should be given to deport the four persons who have spent more than two years at the detention centre,” the court ordered.

The court observed that the foreigners have been detained even as no pending case has been registered against them.

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