Mistaken Identity: Assam Woman Declared ‘Foreigner’ in 2021 Even After Proved To Be ‘Indian’ in 2016

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The Gauhati high court set aside the tribunal’s 2021 decision saying that the identity of Bhanu in both the judgments is the same
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Assam woman declared foreigner, finds discrepancies
A foreingers' tribunal in Assam (file)

Guwahati: A 55-year-old woman from Assam’s Darrang district, Hasina Bhanu, to walk out free from a foreigners’ detention camp in Tezpur on Thursday after the Gauhati high court came to rescue and directed to release her despite she was declared as a foreigner by the Foreigners Tribunal (FT) in March this year.

The reason behind the direction came after the high court found that the same FT had declared her an ‘Indian’ in 2016.

On Monday, the Gauhati high court set aside the tribunal’s 2021 decision saying that the identity of Bhanu in both the judgments is the same and that the second impugned opinion in respect of the same person cannot be sustained.

In 2016 after being served her notice by the FT, Bhanu had submitted multiple documents including voter list records of her father and grandfather from 1966, her own voter list record from 1989 and documents linking her to her father and grandfather. Based on the documents, the Darrang tribunal declared had declared her “Indian by birth” then.

However, ironically, the state border police once again register a case against her in 2017 and resend notice.

At the second hearing in March this year, Bhanu once again furnished all her documents proving her citizenship. However, this time, the tribunal found an issue with her ‘linkage documents’ and declared her a foreigner. She was then detained in October. Subsequently, she moved the Gauhati high court.

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