Immediately remedy pathetic conditions at Lampur detention centre: HC to AAP govt

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New Delhi, Feb 12 (PTI) The Delhi High Court has directed the AAP government to take 'immediate steps' to remedy the 'pathetic conditions' at the Lampur detention center, where foreigners are housed prior to deportation, with regard to cleanliness, hygiene and medical facilities.

A bench of Justices Siddharth Mridul and A J Bhambhani directed the Social Welfare Department of the Delhi government to file a detailed status report regarding steps taken by them and listed the matter for hearing on February 18.

The bench said the report shall include photographs and videography of the centre as it exists currently as well as subsequent to the remedial steps taken by the department.

The direction was issued by the court after perusing a report submitted by an Additional Sessions Judge (ASJ) who was deputed on orders of the high court to visit the detention centre and carry out an inspection of the conditions prevailing there.

According to the report filed by the ASJ, the conditions were deplorable at the centre.

The court on November 9 last year had issued directions for inspection of the centre by a judicial officer while hearing a plea by an Indian woman, whose husband, alleged to be a Pakistani national, has been lodged at Lampur after completing his jail sentence.

The direction was issued after advocates Ajay Verma and Mehak Nakra, representing the woman, told the court that conditions at the detention centre were pathetic for want of cleanliness/hygiene, lack of medical facilities, the detainees not being permitted to communicate with their family and lawyers and no legal aid was being provided to them.

The petitioner -- Ruma Bibi -- has filed a habeas corpus petition seeking release of her husband Asif Hossain from the centre.

The woman, in her plea, has 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 last year and sent to the deportation centre.

The plea has 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 HMP RKS RKS