Gauhati HC Rejects Citizenship Claim Of Man Who Claimed To Have Entered India In 1965 [Read Judgment]

Gauhati HC Rejects Citizenship Claim Of Man Who Claimed To Have Entered India In 1965 [Read Judgment]Gauhati High Court

The Gauhati High Court has affirmed the findings of a Foreigner's Tribunal in Assam against a man who claimed to have entered India in 1965.

Last September, the Tribunal in Barpeta had declared one Anil Barman to be a foreigner on the ground that he could not prove his presence in Assam before 1971.

In the petition filed in the High Court challenging the Tribunal's findings, Barman referred to a Relief Eligibility Certificate issued by the Government of India, as per which one Anil Barman aged 14 years entered India on April 9 1965. He also cited the voters list of 1989, where his name was entered.

However, the Division Bench of Justices Manojit Bhuyan and Prasanta Kumar Deka noted that the name of his father as per the voter's list - Umesh- was not mentioned in the Relief Eligibility Certificate. The persons named in the said certificate were his elder brothers, mother, aunt and a nephew, with one Lal Mohan Barman as the head of the family migrating into India. Also, in none of the voters list prior to 1989, his name did not figure, though he had attained the eligible age to vote in 1975. The name of Umesh, Anil Burman's father, was not mentioned there.

"There are no documents to show that the petitioner has been ordinarily a resident in Assam since the date of his alleged entry into Assam in the year 1965. This fact assumes importance, inasmuch as, being ordinarily a resident of Assam since the date of entry is one of the condition precedent under section 6A of the Citizenship Act, 1955", said the bench.

Though he had produced copies of sale deed and jamabandi to establish citizenship, the Court said that they were no proved either through production of the original or through testimony of the legal custodian. The testimony of the witness produced by Barman was discarded holding that he could not establish petitioner's presence in Assam before 1971.F

Holding that the petitioner could not establish any error in the findings of the Tribunal, the writ petition was dismissed.

"We are satisfied that the order/opinion of the Tribunal was rendered upon due appreciation of the entire facts, evidence and documents brought on record. We find no infirmity in the findings and opinion of the Tribunal. We would observe that the certiorari jurisdiction of the writ court being supervisory and not appellate jurisdiction, this Court would refrain from reviewing the findings of facts reached by the Tribunal", observed the bench.

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