The Telegraph
Tuesday , November 20 , 2012
Since 1st March, 1999
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HC rap on chief secy

Guwahati, Nov. 19: Assam chief secretary Naba Kumar Das today faced the ire of Gauhati High Court for his failure to furnish a report on steps taken by the state government against illegal migrants within the stipulated time.

A division bench of Chief Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel and Justice N. Kotiswar Singh today showcaused Das as to why contempt proceedings should not be initiated against him for disobeying the court order.

Das has been asked to reply to the showcause notice by January 7, 2013, which has been fixed as the next date of hearing.

The high court on September 21 had asked Das to file an affidavit by today on steps taken by it to detect and deport illegal migrants from the state, with special reference to the BTAD and relief camps set up to provide shelter to the riot-displaced people.

The court had also asked Das to mention how far the measures taken by the state government have been successful in identifying and deporting illegal migrants.

The court sought the affidavit in connection with a public interest litigation (number 57/2012) filed by the All-Assam Tribal Sangha seeking appropriate directions from the court to the government to ensure that no illegal Bangladeshi migrant settles down in the state taking advantage of the process initiated by the government to rehabilitate people displaced in the recent violence in BTAD.

The state government, however, could not file the affidavit today and the court took strong exception to it.

For the Sangha, its general secretary Aditya Khaklari had filed the PIL while advocate Anand Bhuyan appeared in the court on behalf of the petitioner.

A joint meeting of various organisations representing the Bodos and other ethnic communities of the state, which was held at the head-office of Bodo Sahitya Sabha at Kokrajhar on September 2, had authorised the Sangha to move the high court on this important issue.

Representatives of organisations such as the Bodo Sahitya Sabha, Bodoland Citizens’ Forum, All Bodo Wom-en’s Welfare Association, Bodo Women’s Justice Forum, All Assam Tribal Youth Leag-ue and All Surrendered NDFB Welfare Association, were also present at the meeting.