April 22, 2015 6:13:22 pm
Even as Tribunals specially created for handling cases related to illegal infiltrators from Bangladesh into Assam have declared over 38,000 persons as foreigners, the police have now sought the support of the public to trace them after most of them have gone underground.
A series of advertisements put out by the Assam Police in local newspapers here on Wednesday gave lists of over 1600 such “untraced declared foreigners” who had illegally entered the state after 1971, and sought information about them from the citizens. “We are soon releasing lists for the remaining districts too,” said KK Baishya, SP (Border) in the Assam Police.
Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi, meanwhile, said it was difficult to deport the Bangladeshi infiltrators even after they were declared as “foreigners” by the Tribunals because Bangladesh had refused to accept them. “There are problems in deporting those declared and identified as foreigners. Bangladesh does not want to take them back,” Gogoi said when asked to comment on the advertisements put out by the Assam Police.
Gogoi also said while he did not have the authority to talk directly with Bangladesh, it was for the Centre to take up the issue with the neighbouring country. “I cannot directly talk to Bangladesh. We have been pressing the Centre,” the chief minister said.
The newspaper advertisements put out by the Assam Police (Border) gave names of at last 1600 such “untraced declared foreigners” of 12 of the state’s 35 police districts, with the Biswanath Chariali police district showing the longest list with 681 names. The Barpeta district list on the other hand 434 names, while the Guwahati City Police district list showed 128 names. Other districts whose lists of “untraced” Bangladeshi infiltrators were published on Wedneday included Dhemaji (105), Baksa (99), Goalpara (72) and Golaghat (63).
Names that have figured in these lists included both Hindus and Muslims, while there were names of several people belonging to the Hajong tribe. “The above-mentioned persons are untraced declared foreigners. If you come across any one of them or have any information about them, please inform,” the advertisements which had telephone numbers of SPs and other senior officers of the Assam Police (Border wing) of the respective districts, said.
It was only last month that the Assam government had informed the state assembly that while 38,186 persons have been declared as foreigners by the Foreigners Tribunals set up specially for this purpose across the state,only 2,448 have been “pushed back” to Bangladesh. Most of them were either absconding or dead, Bhumidhar Barman, minister for Assam Accord implementation, had said. Sixty-eight such persons however are lodged in detention camps, waiting to be deported.
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