Inform about jailed foreigners waiting deportation: Delhi HC

New Delhi, Feb 13: The Delhi High Court Thursday directed the central government to inform it on the number of jailed foreigners waiting for deportation, while dealing with a letter sent by a Saudi Arabian man languishing in Tihar jail where he sought help to go back to his native country.

A division bench of Justice P.K. Bhasin and Justice J.R. Midha ordered the concerned ministry officials and jail superintendent to be present in the court Feb 26 with the details.

“Let a detailed report be submitted by the central government before the next date when some senior officials from concerned ministries, fully acquainted with the fact of the case, shall also appear with all original records,” the court said.

“The officials shall also bring information as to how many like the petitioner are languishing in Indian jails and waiting for deportation to their own countries and for what reasons they are not being deported,” it added.

The court’s direction came while hearing a case based on the letter sent by Sheikh Abdul Aziz, a 32-year-old Saudi who was sent to jail by a Srinagar court in 2006 for failing to give satisfactory reason for travelling in India without a valid passport and visa.

Aziz had come to Bangladesh, from where he entered India through Kolkata. He remained in Odisha for some time and reached Srinagar through Delhi.

He was apprehended July 27, 2005 in Srinagar and later sent to a year’s imprisonment after being charged under the Foreigners Act.

While the Srinagar court directed the authorities to deport Aziz to his native country within two months after his release, no efforts were made, he said in the plea.

The bench also ordered the central government to be in touch with the concerned ministries to look into the matter of continued detention of foreigners in Indian jails.