SC reserves order on Assam detentions centres issue

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday reserved its order on a plea seeking release of foreigners who have been detained indefinitely at detention centres in Assam.

A bench headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi was hearing a petition filed by human rights activist Harsh Mander seeking release of foreigners who have been detained indefinitely.

On May 2, the top court has appointed Prashant Bhushan as an amicus curiae and replaced Harsh Mander, the litigants in the PIL, with SC Legal Services Authority.

Bhushan strongly opposed the state government inaction in providing humane condition in the detention centres, terming it as a breach of human rights. Bhushan pressed for detenuees' right to liberty, saying they are being held against international laws.

Bhushan has argued that the foreigners have a constitutional right against indefinite detention, and also right to liberty; and they deserve humane conditions in the detention centres.

Harsh Mander filed a PIL in February 2019 asking the apex court to look into the matter at the earliest, as the condition of the detunees was extremely poor.

When the matter came up for hearing in April, the court expressed its dissatisfaction with the data provided by the Assam government. More than 900 foreinger are in detention centres, four have been deported and nearly 100,000 have been identified as illegal foreigners, according to the state government data.

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