"It is unfortunate that the Petitioners, who have come to this Court by challenging their illegal detention by the authority, have concealed the material fact that their Visa had already expired and they have remained in the Country without any valid Visa for about nine years and on account of the said fact, they have been arrested by the police on 24.9.2019," observed the Allahabad High Court on Wednesday while hearing a habeas corpus writ petition filed by two Nigerian nationals.
A Division Bench comprising of Justice Ramesh Sinha and Justice Samit Gopal has now sought response from the relevant authorities with respect to the Petitioners, Chinasa Victor Obioha and Chima Paul Ugochukwu.
"The Additional Commissioner of Police, Gautam Budh Nagar is directed to file his personal affidavit in the matter within three days bringing on record the instruction which has been placed by learned A.G.A. before the Court today," the Court ordered.
The AGA had informed the Court that the Petitioners had come to India on 26.12.2010 and 5.1.2010 respectively and as their respective Visa expired in the year 2011 and 2010 and they were present in the country without any valid Visa.
He further stated that for obtaining relevant travel documents of the Petitioners, several letters were sent to the Nigerian Embassy in 2019 and 2020. Furthermore, the Union Ministry of Home Affairs was requested to deport the Petitioners following which the Nigerian Embassy was contacted.
In view of these submissions, the Division Bench has directed the competent authority of the Union of India to file a personal affidavit in this regard by the next date, failing which he shall appear in person.
"The Competent Authority of Union of India shall also inform this Court what reply it has received from the Nigerian Embassy in pursuance of its communication dated 23.7.2020," the order states.
Meanwhile, the State assured the Court that the Petitioners were being provided all the necessary facilities like hygiene, health inspection and also precaution against Covid19 pandemic, in the detention camp.
The matter is now listed for hearing on November 24, 2020.
The Petitioners had approached the High Court through their next friends and wives. It was alleged that both the Petitioners were illegally detained at Surajpur Police lines, 49 Battalion, Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh and are under detention since 24th September, 2019.
They had urged that their application for grant of long-term Visa be considered sympathetically and they be granted the same as per the MHA Guidelines.
The High Court had thereafter directed the Union of India and the Uttar Pradesh Government to respond to the allegations put forth in the Petition.
Case Title: Chinasa Victor Obioha & Anr. v. State of UP & Ors.