Union minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal on Friday urged External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj to identify the Punjabis being held in a detention centre in the US and to take up the issue with her US counterpart to ensure that they receive consular and legal access.
The food processing minister said that according to media reports 52 Indians were detained in the facility in Oregon but there was no report about their identities.
She said the Punjab government had also not been able to identify them as no effort was made to establish a control room and reach out to the affected families.
Badal, who is SAD MP from Bathinda, said in a statement that Swaraj could ask the Indian Consulate concerned to seek their details.
She said reports emanating from the US indicated that the detainees were not being allowed access to lawyers.
She requested Swaraj to request the American authorities not to deport any of the detainees without giving them ample opportunities to make relevant appeals.
The Union minister said reports from Oregon also stated that the Indian detainees were being held in sub-human conditions and urged her to intervene in the matter by taking up the issue with her counterparts.
The group of 52 Indians, mostly Sikhs, form the largest group of detainees in the total 123 illegal immigrants being held at a facility in Sheridan.
The detention centre was recently visited by a group of Democratic lawmakers from the Oregon State, who later told the media about the alleged inhuman condition of the illegal immigrants. The immigrants are seeking asylum in the US.