The Government of India has decided to repatriate three Muslim Uyghurs who are lodged in a J&K jail even as they had approached the Ministry of Home Affairs for asylum in India. The State Government has also sought dismissal of a petition filed by the trio in the High Court for their refuge.
Hailing from China's Xinjiang province, Abdul Khaliq, Abdul Salam and Adil were arrested by Army on June 12, 2013, near Sultan Chusku in Ladakh region. Later they were sentenced to one-and- a-half year imprisonment by Chief Judicial Magistrate Nobra. After completing the sentence, they are presently being held in district jail Leh under the Public Safety Act.
They had also approached the Ministry of Home Affairs as well as the J&K High Court against their repatriation to China and sought asylum/ refuge in India. They had sought asylum fearing their prosecution and even execution at the hands of Chinese authorities in case they are sent back to their native country.
The documents submitted by J&K Government on November 11, while filing its response on the petition, reveal that MHA has decided to repatriate the trio.
The MHA's Foreigners Division has informed the Principal Secretary Home, J&K Government, that after examining the matter, the Government has decided to repatriate the trio to their native country.
"The matter has been considered by the Ministry and it has been decided to deport/ repatriate three Chinese nationals- Adil, Khaliq and Abdul Salam R/O Xinjiang , China(Uyghur), presently lodged in district jail Leh – to their native country," reads the letter (Ref.No 25019/03/2016/F-IV, dated: 17-05-2016) written by Under Secretary (V), MHA, to Principal Secretary Home, J&K Government.
In the same communiqué, the Home Ministry has directed the J&K Government to take up the matter of issuance of travel documents for the trio with the Ministry of External Affairs.
"You are, therefore, requested to complete the deportation of the above China (Uyghur) nationals in consultation with Ministry of External Affairs (East Asia Division) for issuance of travel documents for deportation to their native country at the earliest provided there is no other court case pending against them and they are not required in any other case," the letter reads.
It has also come to fore that State Home department had last year took up the matter with Ministry of External Affairs and conveyed it that "they are not involved / wanted in any other case(s) in J&K."
"It is requested to kindly take up the matter with the Chinese Embassy for issue of requisite travel documents in favour of the Chinese nationals for their deportation to their native country, as per the guidelines issues by the MHA, Foreigners Division)," reads the communiqué (Home/PB-V/1528-30/20154, dated: 25-8-2015) from Special Secretary Home to Joint Secretary (Consular), MEA.
Meanwhile, the State Government has prayed for dismissal of the petition filed by the trio in the High Court.
"It is submitted that consideration of the plea of the petitioner for grant of asylum/ temporary refuge in India doesn't fall within the jurisdiction of answering respondents," reads the reply filed by Special Secretary Home.
"…………None of the legally enforceable rights of the petitioners have been violated or infringed by the answering respondents, as such, the writ petition is not maintainable."