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SC sets aside order declaring Assam native as foreigner

SC sets aside order declaring Assam native as foreigner

New Delhi, Feb 19 (PTI) The Supreme Court has set aside an order declaring a man as foreigner whose Indian citizenship was denied on the ground of discrepancy in the name of his grandfather. A bench of Justices Rohinton Fali Nariman and Vineet Saran noted that character 'F' was replaced with 'M' in his grandfather's name in some of the documents.While in all the documents produced before it, the Assam native's own name -- Sirajul Hoque -- and his father's name -- Hakim Ali -- was same throughout, in some of the documents, his grandfather's name was shown as Kefatullah instead of Kematullah, it noted.It further noted that the name of the father of Kemtullah or Kefatullah, appears as Amtullah throughout all the documents.The discrepancies in Kematullah's name had led to the Foreigner's Tribunal declaring him a foreigner. Hoque's grandfather and father later lived in different villages was an additional ground for Tribunal's conclusion.The Gauhati High Court had dismissed the petition filed against the tribunal's judgment.The apex court, however, noted that Hoque had successfully established his grandfather's and father's identity."Having gone through these documents, we are of the view that it is not possible to state that Kematullah is not the same despite being named Kefatullah in some of the documents. This being so, the grandfather's identity, father's identity etc. has been established successfully by the appellant."Further, the mere fact that the father may later have gone to another village is no reason to doubt this document. We, therefore, set aside the judgment of the High Court as well as the Foreigner's Tribunal and allow the appeal," the bench said.Apart from these documents, the court took on record certain other documents, including the NRC Registration details of 1971, photo identity cards issued by the Election Commission of India and the identity cards issued to his brother, including voters lists in which the Hoque's name appeared. PTI UK PKS SA