Guwahati: In another incident, Assam authorities have admitted to the incident of “mistaken identity” that resulted in a rightful citizen spending years in detention on suspicion of being a foreigner, reported NDTV.
This incident came into light at a time when an additional one lakh people have been removed from the National Register of Citizens (NRC) draft list.
Spending over three years in the Kokrajhar detention centre, the 59-year-old Madhubala Mondal was released on Thursday.
The border branch of the Assam Police, the agency responsible for identifying foreigners in the state, has admitted that she was placed under detention after a faulty investigation.
According to sources, the agency of Assam Police was supposed to arrest Madhumala Das, an alleged foreigner residing in Bishnupur village in 2016.
However, the woman had died by then and the police personnel picked up Mondal instead.
Madhubala Mondal, a widow, was the sole breadwinner for her household, which otherwise comprised a deaf-and-dumb daughter abandoned after marriage. Monda, being illiterate and extremely poor could not challenge the police when they arrived at her door step.
After few social workers from Chirang district came to know about her detention, the matter was brought to the Assam government’s attention.
The probe into the matter took years to complete.
Earlier this month, 40-year-old Amila Sah from Dholaibeel in Sonitpur district was sent to a detention centre in Assam after the Foreigners Tribunal declared her a foreigner. Curiously, the names of her family members - including her siblings - figure in the National Register of Citizens draft.
Last month, Mohammad Sanaullah -- a retired Indian Army soldier -- was declared an illegal immigrant by a tribunal and sent to a detention centre in Assam. He was later bailed out on orders issued by the Gauhati High Court. He is a former soldier, who had served in the Army for three decades, was accused of being a foreigner who has been living illegally in the country.