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Mohammed Sanaullah, 52
Mohammed Sanaullah, 52|File image
ASSAM

Assam: Detained Army veteran Mohammed Sanaullah gets interim bail

In a surprise development, senior SC advocate Indira Jaising appears in Gauhati HC for the retired honorary captain who was declared a ‘foreigner’ on May 23

Jayanta K Goswami

Jayanta K Goswami

Guwahati: In a significant development, the division bench of Gauhati High Court (HC) has granted interim bail to Army veteran Mohammed Sanaullah, who was declared a foreigner by a Foreigners’ Tribunal in Assam and lodged at the detention camp in Goalpara, with a surety amount of Rs 20,000 on Friday afternoon.

The division bench has also issued notices to all the respondents of the case, including the Centre, Assam government, the defence ministry and the NRC authorities.

Sanaullah, who served the Indian Army for more than three decades, was sent to a detention camp in Goalpara after he was declared a ‘foreigner’ by a Foreigners' Tribunal in Assam on May 23.

Earlier in the day, high-profile Supreme Court advocate Indira Jaisingh appeared for Sanaullah where she extensively elaborated on the various aspects of the case. Expressing serious concern over the Foreigners’ Tribunal’s decision to declare the Indian Army veteran a foreigner, Jaisingh, who was in Shillong in Meghalaya for some official work, decided to appear for Sanaullah in the city court without taking any fee, sources said.

Family members of the 52-year-old retired honorary captain had approached the Gauhati High Court, less than 24 hours after he was detained. Ironically, Sanaullah was serving as an assistant sub-inspector (ASI) in the Assam Police Border Organisation, and was on the job of picking up suspected foreigners and serving them notices till last year.

Army veteran Mohammed Sanaullah in custody
Army veteran Mohammed Sanaullah in custody
EastMojo image

Earlier, senior Congress leader and Kaliabor MP Gaurav Gogoi had written a letter to Union home minister Amit Shah seeking his intervention into the matter and demanding justice for Sanaullah.

Meanwhile, the Assam Police has also started an investigation against the then sub-inspector (SI) of Border Police, Chandramal Das, who has been accused of submitting fabricated documents to declare Sanaullah a foreigner.

The Boko police station, which falls under the Kamrup (Rural) district of Assam, has registered three separate cases (bearing numbers 474/2019, 475/2019 and 476/2019) under Section 466/471 of the IPC against the SI following three separate FIRs filed by Amzad Ali, Kuran Ali and Sobahan Ali on Sunday.

Initial investigation has already started, said the police. “However, it will take some time to reach a logical conclusion in the case. Now, we have to collect evidence and other important documents from the court,” Jogen Barman, OC, Boko police station, told EastMojo over phone.

The three persons were identified as witnesses in the statement recorded by Das on July 27, 2008. In the statement, it was "agreed” by Sanaullah with his thumb impression that he hailed from Bangladesh and resided in a government land at Kalahi village under Boko police station.

Meanwhile, talking to EastMojo, family members of Sanaulah have expressed satisfaction over the role played by senior advocate Indira Jaising.

“At last, it’s the victory of truth. We must thank Jaising Madam and other lawyers for their initiative to help us. She realised the mental trauma that the entire family members of are going through. She came to our rescue on her own and she appeared for Sanaullah in the Gauhati High Court without taking a single penny from us,” Ajmal Haque, cousin brother of Sanaullah, also a retired Army officer himself, told EastMojo after the bail order.

Haque also thanked the role of the media in elaborately publishing the real story behind the all high-profile conspiracies against him.