NEW DELHI, May 9 - The Government of India today formally informed the Supreme Court that it is in touch with the Bangladesh government at the highest level regarding deportation of illegal migrants.
Making a mention before the bench headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta said the Union government is carrying out discussion regarding the matter of deportation of identified foreigners with the Government of Bangladesh.
He said that there should be no problem in deportation of those illegal migrants who have identified themselves as Bangladeshi nationals. He added that the problem has arisen in case of those who have declined to identify themselves as Bangladeshi nationals.
The Solicitor General further informed the apex court that in this connection, the Guwahati-based Counsellor General has been given diplomatic access to the individuals who have identified themselves as illegal migrants.
The Assam government has informed the top court that it was proposing to set up 1,000 foreigners tribunals (FTs) in the State to detect foreigners. In the first phase, 200 FTs would be set up, the State government has proposed. The plan is to set up the remaining FTs in a phased manner.
The CJI-led bench then asked the State government for an action plan as to how they plan to implement its proposal. The bench also wanted to know how the State government proposed to get the judges to man the 1,000 FTs.
The Supreme Court then directed the State government to submit its action plan in form of an affidavit before the court.
If the need arises then the Supreme Court will constitute a special bench to finalise the matter during the summer vacation recess, the CJI said.
Amicus curie Prashant Bhusan opined that identified illegal migrants cannot be kept in confinement indefinitely. He supported the Assam government�s proposal to release the illegal migrants as submitted in the last hearing.
On April 25, the Supreme Court had pulled up Assam Chief Secretary Alok Kumar for submitting that the government proposed to release all detained foreigners who have undergone over five years of detention after capturing their biometrics and other details.
CJI Gogoi came down heavily on the State Chief Secretary for submitting an affidavit proposing to release detained foreigners after five years with a bond and biometric.
Alok Kumar�s affidavit had stated that the foreigners who have completed five years in detention centres would be released after they furnish a security of Rs 5 lakh, and then submit documents to verify their address. The Assam government would also prepare their biometric database.
The hearing will continue tomorrow.
Meanwhile, addressing a press conference, AASU adviser Samujjal Bhattacharya said that the resolution of the foreigner problem was the core objective of the Assam Accord. And as a signatory of the Assam Accord, the AASU might intervene, he added.