Complete fencing of Indo-Bangladesh border soon, SC tells Centre

New Delhi, March 8 (IANS) Asking the Central government to complete soon the fencing of the India-Bangladesh border, where it has not been done, to check illegal immigration from Bangladesh into Assam, the Supreme Court on Wednesday also directed it to release funds for it.

A bench of Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice R.F. Nariman was told by the central government that on March 10, the Expenditure and Finance Committee would have a meeting, which would also be attended by Home Secretary, to decide the issue of releasing funds.

The court took into note a status report filed by the central government on the progress made relating to securing and fencing the international border.

Additional Solicitor General P.S. Patwalia told the court that government had finalised some tenders and work orders issued to successful bidders for fencing. The process of re-tendering (in some cases) have been started, he added.

He said that government is making effort to acquire land, to be used for creating infrastructure to secure the border and Assam government has asked for Rs 2.96 crore for land.

The court was hearing a batch of pleas filed by Assam Sanmilita Mahasangha, Assam Public Works and All Assam Ahom Association against illegal immigrants from Bangladesh to Assam.

The apex court had on December 17, 2014, passed a string of directions, including an order to the government to complete fencing work along India-Bangladesh border within three months to check illegal cross-border influx of Bangladesh nationals into Assam and streamline the process to deport them back.