Last 'D-voter' walks out of Assam detention centre
- Recently, Manindra Das - the last “foreigner” has walked out of one of the six detention centres in Assam.
- Manindra Das was marked as a ‘D-voter’ in 2015 and later declared a “foreigner” in a one-sided decision by a Foreigners’ Tribunal in 2019.
- Those persons whose citizenship was doubtful or was under dispute were categorized as ‘D- Voters’ during the preparation of the NRC in Assam.
- Those people who were marked by Foreigners’ Tribunal (FT) for allegedly failing to prove their citizenship after the State police’s Border wing marks him or her as an illegal immigrant.
- These are quasi-judicial bodies established under the 'Foreigners (Tribunals) Order', 1964.
- These tribunals determine whether a person illegally residing in the country is a "foreigner" or not.
- Composition: Advocates not below the age of 35 years of age with at least 7 years of practice (or) Retired Judicial Officers from the Assam Judicial Service (or) Retired IAS of ACS Officers (not below the rank of Secretary/Addl. Secretary) having experience in quasi-judicial works.
Power to establish Foreign Tribunals:
- After the amendment in the Foreigners (Tribunals) Order, 1964 by the Ministry of Home Affairs, the District Magistrates have been empowered to establish Tribunals in all the States and Union Territories.
- Earlier, the powers to establish tribunals were vested only with the Centre.
Right to appeal in foreign tribunals
- In the amended order Foreigners (Tribunals) Amendment Order 2019, all persons have been given the right to appeal to the tribunals.
- Earlier, only the state administration could file a case against a suspect in these tribunals.