While laying down elaborate guidelines for dealing with the detention of illegal migrants under the Foreigners Act, 1946, the Karnataka High Court said that illegal migrants sometimes impose pressure on citizens and pose a security threat to the nation.
A bench of Justice K N Phaneendra observed :
"India is a large country having its border with many countries.People in the sub-continent have a common history and share many similarities in physical looks. Due to various reasons including political or economical, inimical reasons, some people from neighboring countries may enter India. Maybe due to some cultural and ethnic similarities, on many occasions such migrants go unnoticed and they are almost willing and try to settle in our country. These illegal migrants sometimes pose a threat to national security, and infringe the rights of Indian Citizens."
It added that
"It should be borne in mind that now-a-days terrorism has become serious concern for most of the nations. Illegal migrants who enter Indian Territory with obvious motives to cause damage to national security are more vulnerable. It is also evident from various instances which happened in India, that some miscreants have recruited Indian citizens to their organizations for their wrongful gain, in turn to cause wrongful loss to Indian territory. We have very bitter examples of infiltrators inhuman acts in Jammu and Kashmir, Rohingyas in the State of Myanmar."
"The retaining of the illegal migrants may be sometimes helpful to the country if they come to the country eking their livelihood and they are all from hardworking community. But, that does not mean to say that for that reason, they can be retained in India in violation of the various Acts and Rules of the Country", the Court said.
Who is an illegal migrant?
The court also clarified on the status of illegal immigrants:
It said :
"Persons who have not acquired any citizenship as per the Indian Citizenship Act, but who reside in India fall under the category of illegal migrants. Even the children born to parents who are illegal migrants, or any one of them is an illegal migrant are also not citizens of India automatically by birth.
Therefore, it clearly goes to show that taking birth in India is not a criterion, but they should fall under the definition as defined under the Citizenship Act."
Foreign national who is not a citizen of India, violated not only the provisions under Foreigners Act, but also any of the penal laws of the country, shall be treated on par with other accused.
The court said "So far as the procedural aspects are concerned, the same procedure requires to be adopted by the authorities with reference to Registration, investigation, inquiry and trial before the competent courts of law. All the provisions of Cr.P.C are ipso facto applicable to those foreign nationals also."
Also Read : Keep Illegal Migrants In Foreigners Detention Centres Even After Grant Of Bail : Karnataka HC Issues Guidelines [Read Order]
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