Court Orders Inspection of Rohingya Detention Centre in Delhi Over Lack of Facilities

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Shadiya Akhtar, a UNHRC card holder Rohingya, moved the court over her deteriorating health, lack of hygienic and nutritional food, and inadequate access to sunlight.

Team Clarion

NEW DELHI  — The Delhi High Court has recently directed officials of the Foreign Regional Registration Office (FRRO), Central government and Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB) to jointly inspect the Rohingya detention centre ‘Seva Kendra’ in Northwest Delhi over an alleged lack of basic amenities.

Justice Prathiba M. Singh on Thursday ordered the inspection of Seva Kendra in Shejada Bagh. The court also asked to place the photographs of the centre on record, media reports said.

The court order was issued on a petition moved by Sabera Khatoon, whose sister Shadiya Akhtar is detained at the centre. Khatoon’s counsel submitted that Shadiya Akhtar is not being provided proper medical care, media reports quoted ANI as saying. 

Impleading the DUSIB as one of the respondents, the court directed the respondents to file a report on the issue. The court also directed to place on record the medical records of Shaidya Akhtar in view of the submissions of the petitioner’s counsel.

The petitioner’s counsel, Ujjaini Chatterjee, submitted that Shadiya Akhtar, who is a United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) card holder, was not being provided basic amenities like access to warm water, bed, blanket, pillow, winter essentials and winter wear.

The petition said Shadiya Akhtar has repeatedly complained to her about her deteriorating health, lack of hygienic and nutritional food, and inadequate access to sunlight in the detention centre. She also informed the petitioner that there was no warm water in the detention centre.

It was also submitted that apart from food the other facilities have to be provided by the DUSIB at the centre which is run by the MCD.

Additionally, Shadiya also complained to her about various other difficulties that she is facing in the detention centre. The petitioner is very concerned about the well-being of her sister and such inhuman treatment of her sister which diminishes her basic human dignity and right to life in this indefinite detention, the petition stated.

The petition stated that Shadiya Akhtar is a Rohingya woman who escaped the brutal genocide in Myanmar against the Rohingya community in 2016 and sought asylum in India.

After a rigorous process of “Refugee Status Determination”, she was granted “Refugee Status” and was given a United Nations refugee identity card within three months, the petition stated.

It is also stated that the Shadiya lived in a refugee camp at Kanchan Kunj for one year and then in 2017, she moved to Shram Vihar in Madanpur Khadar area of New Delhi, after her marriage. She lived in the refugee camp at Shram Vihar with her infant son, who is now 3 years old, until 2020. She has no criminal antecedents or complaints against her, it added.

Shadiya has been living in India since 2016 in accordance with the laws of the country and has complied with all requirements of the Respondents and the UNHCR, the plea said.

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