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What Are The Rights Of Foreigners With Respect To Visa Restrictions?

Written By – Rajnish

The Supreme Court on Monday agreed to consider issues related to rights of foreigners in the matter of Tablighi Jamaat case. Wherein through the notification issued by Home Ministry, Government of India in year 2020 some foreign nationals were blacklisted who were the members of Tablighi Jamaat on the outset of 1st Covid wave in India. The said notification prevents those persons to obtain Visas to enter into India. Aftermath of the notification several FIRs were registered against those persons in different states and UTs.
The matter is listed before the bench of Justices AM Khanwilkar and CT Ravikumar.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta on behalf of Union of India submitted that in these matters (as several cases have been clubbed) question pertaining to rights of foreign nationals with regards to visa restrictions arises. He further stated there are certain statutory rights dealing with the rights of the foreign nationals as well as several judgment of this apex Court deciding the same rights. Passport (Entry Into India ) Act, 1920 Foreigners Act is dealing with this issues.
The bench listed this case in 2nd week of March in order to decide the matter expeditiously as only one short question is involved in this matter.
In between the Court also heard the petition of a 24-years Malaysian who was aggrieved due to delay in disposal of his petition filed before the Patna HC seeking quashing of criminal cases even after moving many times for expeditious disposal of his case.
The Counsel representing the above petitioner submitted before the Court that this Court on March 25, 2021 pleased to issue a direction to Patna HC for expeditious disposal of such petition. He further also submitted that Union of India in this matter was taking unnecessary adjournments and took 6 dates to file counter affidavit.
The Court in its order said that “It is submitted that UOI is taking unnecessary adjournments. Instead of making any observation, we deem it appropriate to grant liberty to the applicant to invite the attention of Chief Justice of Patna High Court for ensuring expeditious disposal in terms of order passed by this court. We hope & trust that the High Court will be in position to deal with the petition expeditiously.”

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