GUWAHATI: While rejecting a woman’s plea against a tribunal that placed her under the “foreigner” category, Gauhati High Court has said that documents like bank statements and Permanent Account Number (PAN) cards, land revenue receipts, cannot be used to show proof of citizenship.
In the latest order, Justices Manojit Bhuyan and Parthivjyoti Saikia of the Gauhati High Court dismissed Jabeda Begum's plea as the documents submitted by her could not certify her linkage to her projected father or brother.
Referring to a judgment by the same court in 2016 that ordered PAN card and bank documents cannot be used as proof of citizenship. The court said land revenue-paying receipts do not prove the citizenship of a person as well.
Jabeda Begum known as Jabeda Khatun had filed a petition in the Gauhati High Court challenging the order of the foreigners' tribunal that had declared her a foreigner.
However, bank and land records were, in the list of documents accepted by the authorities who ran the National Register of Citizenship (NRC) in Assam to identify illegal immigrants.
Earlier the Foreigners Tribunal in Baksa district had issued a notice to Begum on the basis of a reference made by the Superintendent of Police (Border) to prove her Indian citizenship. She came into view before the tribunal and filed her written statement along with the 14 documents, claiming to be a citizen of India.
The documents were- her PAN card and ration card, the NRC details of her father Jabed Ali, two bank passbooks, voter lists were the names of her grandparents, parents and she along with her husband were issued and several land revenue receipts.
"This court... has already held that PAN card and bank documents are not proof of citizenship. Land revenue-paying receipts do not prove the citizenship of a person. Therefore, we find that the tribunal has correctly appreciated the shreds of evidence placed before it..." the high court said.
And the tribunal said that she has failed to give any document that establishes her links to her parents.
The judges ruled that as the Jabeda Begum has failed to prove her linkage with her projected father and her brother, thus, the written petition is devoid of merit and disposed off the case accordi