Pulished on: 26 September 2022 at 17:43 IST
The Supreme Court has issued a notice on a plea filed by a man seeking a directive that he not be deported to Pakistan until his claim to be an Indian citizen is resolved in accordance with Section 9(2) of the Citizenship Act.
A bench of Justices Surya Kant and JB Pardiwala also granted a status quo in the case. The appeal has been served on the District Superintendent of Police (Godhra), State of Gujarat, and the Union of India’s Ministry of Home Affairs.
The petitioner was born in Godhra, Gujarat in 1962 and finished his schooling in India, according to the plea. The petitioner migrated to Pakistan in 1976 but returned to India in 1983, marrying an Indian lady in Godhra on March 2, 1984, and having three children from the marriage.
The petitioner left again and returned to India in 1991 after receiving all of the necessary licences, including a residence permit, and proceeded to remain in India with his family.
Fearing deportation, the petitioner filed a routine civil complaint before the Court of Civil Judge, requesting that he be declared a citizen of India under Section 5(1)(C) of the Indian Citizenship Act, 1955, because he was married to an Indian citizen.
He further requested that authorities refrain from deporting him until the Union of India rules on his case under Section 9(2) of the Act. In 1999, the civil judge ruled that the court lacked authority to decide the petitioner’s citizenship. However, the Civil Judge partially permitted his decision to require that he not be deported back until his Citizenship Act application is approved.
After 4 years, the Union of India filed a delayed appeal under Section 96 of the CrPC against the Civil Judge’s ruling before the Principal District Judge. On 12.07.2022, the District Judge overturned the Civil Judge’s decision.
The petitioner, who was dissatisfied with the District Judge’s decision, petitioned the Gujarat High Court. On August 2, 2022, the High Court denied his appeal, ruling that no serious issue of law had emerged.
The petitioner, represented by Senior Advocate IH Sayed, stated that the High Court ignored the fact that the petitioner has been placed susceptible to deportation and that if he is not safeguarded until his case is heard, it would be a breach of the legal system.
Taruna Singh Gohil, an advocate, filed the petition.