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Delhi HC refuses to hear plea on evacuating Indians from Afghanistan

The division bench of Chief Justice D.N Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh questioned the petitioner about the source of his information pertaining to the 227 persons and said that it has “doubts” about the facts mentioned in the petition.

The petitioner’s counsel responded that the petitioner is directly in contact with the people in Afghanistan and has also sourced the information from Indian World Forum, a non-governmental organisation. (File)

The Delhi High Court Wednesday declined to entertain a petition seeking immediate evacuation of 227 Indian nationals and Afghan nationals of Indian origin from Afghanistan. The court, however, asked the Centre to take a decision on the petitioner’s representation on the issue.

The division bench of Chief Justice D.N Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh questioned the petitioner about the source of his information pertaining to the 227 persons and said that it has “doubts” about the facts mentioned in the petition.

“How did you get the copy of somebody’s private application? This is not an easy task,” the court asked the counsel representing the petitioner.

The petitioner’s counsel responded that the petitioner is directly in contact with the people in Afghanistan and has also sourced the information from Indian World Forum, a non-governmental organisation. “The list has been created by us based on the applications which have been filed,” said the counsel.

Out of the total 227, four are stranded Indian citizens, eight are Afghan nationals of Indian origin who have already been granted e-visa by Indian authorities, and the rest are those Afghan nationals of Indian origin who do not have a valid passport or whose applications for grant of e-visa are pending. The petition said Sikhs and Hindus are constantly facing threats to life and property in the war-torn country.

“Unfortunately, till date the Government of India and more particularly the respondents have not taken any steps to provide any assistance of any type whatsoever to them in the matter of their evacuation/repatriation from Afghanistan to India. The long ordeal and waiting for grant of e-visa and lack of evacuation of flights have taken a toll on both mental and physical well-being of these stranded persons,” the petitioner Parminder Pal Singh said in the plea filed through advocate Gurinder Pal Singh.

Parminder, a former spokesman and media advisor of the Delhi Gurdwara Management Committee, had sought issuance of e-visa to the stranded persons and steps for evacuation of all 227 persons by a special flight or through any mode deemed fit and proper.

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