SC slams Assam govt over influx of illegal migrants from Bangladesh

On a day when union home minister Rajnath Singh reached West Bengal to take stock of situations at Indo-Bangla border, the Supreme Court on Tuesday lashed out against Assam government over its lackadaisical attitude in checking the influx of illegal migrants.

The court rejected by calling it “vague” and “highly unsatisfactory” an affidavit by the Assam government on the steps taken to check the influx of illegal Bangladesh nationals through the porous Indo-Bangla border in the state.

“The affidavit of Assam Government is highly unsatisfactory. It is not only vague but the officer has no exposure to ground reality. We refuse to accept the affidavit. We are expressing displeasure over the conduct of the state government,” said a bench of Justices Ranjan Gogoi and R F Nariman.

Throwing out the affidavit, the court said: “The fact has been that you have dragged your feet. We will say your affidavit is highly unsatisfactory worth not accepting. We will call your chief secretary. This is not the way. You have dragged your feet for years and years and still dragging.”

It ordered the Chief Secretary of the state government to either file a “meaningful” affidavit within a week or be ready to be summoned to the court for an explanation.

It also directed the Assam Government to apprise it about the steps taken to comply with its direction to meet the deadline of January 2016 for updating of the National Register of Citizens (NRC).

It further noted the sluggish pace of the constitution of 500 units of task force and said that three months had already passed since the judgement was delivered but nothing seems to have moved.

The apex court on December 17 last had directed the Centre to complete fencing work along the Indo-Bangla border within three months to check cross-border influx of illegal Bangladesh nationals into Assam and streamline the process to deport them back. It had also asked the Centre to detect and deport all illegal migrants who have come to Assam after March 25, 1971. It, however, had said that the foreigners, who came to India between Jannuary 1, 1966 to March 24, 1971, be awarded citizenship as per law.

It had also asked the Centre to hold discussions with the Bangladesh government for ensuring that illegal migrants be sent back and passed a slew of directions in this regard.

Source: Indian Express

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