HC asks judicial officer to visit detention centre to check living conditions

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New Delhi, Nov 12 (PTI) The Delhi High Court has directed a judicial officer to visit a detention centre here, which is alleged to be in a pathetic condition with no medical facilities and detainees are not being permitted to communicate with their families.

The court’s direction came while hearing a plea by an Indian woman, whose husband, alleged to be a Pakistani national is kept in a detention centre here after completing his jail sentence.

She alleged that no legal aid is provided to the detainees and the premises lack cleanliness and hygiene.

A bench of Justices J R Midha and Brijesh Sethi directed the Principal District and Sessions Judge (HQ) to depute a judicial officer to visit the detention centre, Sewa Sadan Deportation Centre Lampur Village in Delhi, and inspect it with respect to the conditions prevailing there.

“If the concerned judicial officer finds any shortcomings in the detention centre, immediate steps shall be taken by the concerned authorities to remove the shortcomings within a specified time and the judicial officer shall again visit the detention centre to verify whether the shortcomings have been removed or not,” the bench said and added that the report be filed before the court in a sealed cover before the next date of hearing on December 16.

The court also permitted the woman’s counsel to submit a short note with respect to her grievances to the concerned judicial officer.

Ruma Bibi has filed an habeas corpus petition seeking release of her husband Asif Hossain from the centre.

Advocates Ajay Verma and Mehak Nakra, representing the woman, submitted that the petitioner’s husband has been detained in the detention centre where the condition is very pathetic for want of cleanliness and hygiene and no medical facilities are being provided there.

The counsel claimed that the detainees are not permitted to communicate with the family and their counsel and no legal aid is provided to them and urged the court to direct a judicial officer to visit the detention centre and inspect it.

The woman, in her plea, said she along with her husband and two children used to live at Kolkata and in 2012, Hossain was arrested from the New Delhi Railway Station under the Official Secrets Act and the Foreigner’s Act.

He was convicted and sentenced by the trial court for nine years and after completion of sentence, he was released from jail in April this year and sent to Sewa Sadan Deportation Centre in Narela for the purpose of deportation.

The plea said that a representation was filed to the concerned authorities for his release as he has been detained illegally in the deportation centre, but the concerned authorities paid no heed to it. PTI SKV SKV RKS RKS