The Supreme Court on Monday sought to know what steps were being taken by the Assam government to trace those who have been declared foreign nationals but have mixed with the local population. The court sought the state Chief Secretary’s presence to explain this.
“What is your government planning to do to trace those people who have merged with the local population,” a bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices Deepak Gupta and Sanjiv Khanna asked Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, who appeared for the state government.
“You are saying that the declared foreigners have gone untraceable. How do you intend to identify them and deport them,” the bench asked.
The bench was unhappy about the affidavit filed in this regard and the fact that the Chief Secretary had not appeared in court on Monday. “These people who are not in detention centres, are you tracing them? Your State is playing around with this Court,” the CJI said, adding that the state’s affidavit “was an exercise in futility”.
The court is hearing a PIL filed by activist Harsh Mander on the plight of foreigners in detention centres in Assam. It contended that they have been kept in detention even after they were declared foreign nationals because their parent country won’t accept them.