In a spectacular twist, all three witnesses have filed a case against Sub-Inspector Chandramal Das of the Assam Police border branch for fabricating their statements to declare a decorated army soldier Mohammad Sanaullah a foreigner before sending him to a detention centre.
The case of Sanaullah, an honourary Captain of the Indian Army, had sent shock-waves across the world after the Foreigners’ Tribunal declared the President Medal winner soldier an illegal resident of India. Md. Kuran Ali, Md. Suwahan Ali and Ajmal Ali from Koloikash village, where Sanuallah lived, have filed an FIR against Das stating that the latter forged their statements and signatures to implicate the ex-soldier of the Indian Army.
“In the Foreigners Tribunal, we have already contended that the case against him is fabricated and holds no truth as at the time when the police claimed to have taken his statement he was deployed in counter-insurgency operation far away in Manipur,” Sanaullah’s advocate Aman Wadud was quoted by The Sentinel.
The Foreigners Tribunal in Assam’s Kamrup district had filed a case against Sanaullah in 2008 after his name was listed as a “D” (doubtful) voter. He was quickly arrested and sent to a detention camp in Goalpara. The three witnesses, according to news agency PTI, also said that Sanaullah was a genuine Indian citizen and was being ‘harassed by the Assam Border Police, which has conspired to declare him a doubtful voter.’
What’s even more shocking is that the Foreigners’ Tribunal heard the case against Sanaullah when the latter was taking part in counter-insurgency operations by the Indian army between May 2008 and August 2009 in Manipur. Even Das has admitted that the decorated ex-soldier was not in Assam during that period.
The Kargil war veteran’s family members have decided to file a case in the Gauhati High Court against the Assam Border Police and Das for allegedly conspiring to declare Sanaullah a ‘foreigner.’
The role of the Indian Army too came under huge condemnation after it reportedly declined to help its own former soldier. The Hindu newspaper had quoted an unnamed army officer as saying, “[There] is very little the Army can do at this juncture.”
Mohammad Foyjal Hoque, a villager, summed it up when he told NDTV that ‘If a person like Sanaulla had to go to jail, what will happen to normal people like us?’
The harassment under the garb of the National Register of Citizens or NRC has already claimed the lives of 23 Muslims. Last week, a 93-year-old Muslim in Assam had consumed poison to avoid the ‘shame’ of being declared a ‘foreigner’ in his own country.