Retired Army man asked to prove Indian citizenship in Assam

by Garry Watts October 3, 2017, 0:49
Retired Army man asked to prove Indian citizenship in Assam

The notice said that Haque had entered the country after March 25 of 1971 without any papers - the cut-off date to be considered for Indian citizenship.

"If I were an illegal Bangladeshi, how could I serve the Indian Army?".

Haque, who lives in Chayyagaon, 70 km from Guwahati, received a notice in September from the foreigner's tribunal, according to reports.

The foreigners' tribunal will hear the case filed by Assam police against Mohd Azmal Haque on Oct 13. "In 2012 also, I had received a notice saying I was a doubtful voter but I submitted all documents in the tribunal court and it had declared me as an Indian citizen. I request the Prime Minister, the President, and the Home Minister to end this harassment of a proper citizen", Haque told CNN-News18. In 2012, his wife Mamtaj Begum was summoned by the tribunal to prove her citizenship.

Hoque was summoned by one of the state's foreigners' tribunals, set up to track illegal immigrants in India. There have been allegations that genuine Indian citizens are often harassed by police and other law enforcing agencies in the name of detecting illegal foreigners. An emotional Haque on Sunday had asked, "Why do I have to be humiliated so many times?"

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After a tweet highlighting Hoque's plight went viral, the Eastern Command of the Indian Army said that "necessary assistance" will be provided to the retired officer.

Again on March this year, 11 people in Kalikajari village who were referred by the border police force to the Tribunal, were descendents of Moulavi Muhammad Amiruddin, the deputy speaker of the first legislative assembly of Assam, who served between 1937 and 1946. We have proved all the documents to the court to prove our India citizenship.

Hoque is a resident of Kalahikash in Assam, a state where infiltration from Bangladesh has been a sensitive issue.

"Hoque was never approached by any investigation agency and now he is being accused of being an "illegal immigrant".

On the other hand, a Guwahati based lawyer Aman Wadud has shared some documents of Azmal Haque's family on Twitter and said that Azmal Haque was born in Kamrup district in 1968. There was no communication from the Assam Government after the issue came to light in the media.

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