Guwahati: The Assam government on Thursday released seven persons, including a woman, who had been in detention camps for over last three years.
The seven had been sent to detention centres at Bongaigaon after they were declared as foreigners by the Foreigners’ Tribunals at different times.
Rights activist Ashraful Hussain said that these seven persons were released on bail of Rs 1 lakh each of two local sureties. All the released detainees have to present themselves before the local police station at least once in a week and as and when required.
“The Supreme Court had on May this year asked the state government to release detainees who had spent more than three years in detention centres. According to the order of the apex court, the government has been releasing the detainees and today’s release are part of that,” he said.
The Central government had recently informed the Lok Sabha that there are 1,043 people in detention camps in Assam so far out of which 1,025 are Bangladeshi citizens and 18 are Myanmar nationals.
The seven persons who had been released from the detention camps are Nibaran Barman (60), Asiruddin (60), Jalal Uddin (50), Chari Sheikh (66), Manikjan Bibi (54), Ajbahar Ali (55) and Ali Akbar (55).
“All the seven had spent more than three years in a detention camp at Bongaigaon,” he said.
Hussain said that it is good to see these people coming out of detention camps. “However, what is hurting is the fact that they were declared as foreigners while their family members are still Indian citizens. They are all genuine citizens but got declared as foreigners due to lack of documents,” he said.
The Assam government had recently instituted a committee to ascertain the status of facilities at the detention centres, and this has been visiting the detention centres in different districts. The move was initiated by the Assam government after two detainees died recently and there were allegations that the inmates in detention centres are not getting due facilities.