In a startling disclosure, the Assam government has admitted before the Supreme Court that 70,000 declared illegal migrants in the state have disappeared before they could be deported back.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta submitted before a bench headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi said that the illegal migrants have merged with the local population.

The state government’s submission angered the top court, as it wondered about the fate of those individuals whose proceedings are yet to be finalized by the Foreigners’ Tribunal when declared foreigners could disappear.

The CJI also took note of the submission by Mehta that a “push back” policy was being followed till 2013. The apex court also rapped the state government for not having its Chief Secretary present in the court despite its order.

Expressing displeasure over the absence of Chief Secretary Alok Kumar the Chief Justice also asked the solicitor general if a non-bailable warrant should be issued against the chief secretary.

“There is a reason why we wanted the Chief Secretaryto be present. But he is not here. Should we issue a non-bailable warrant against him,” a bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi asked Assamgovernment.

As Solicitor General Mehta assured to make the Chief Secretary available on the next date of hearing, the bench ordered that Alok Kumar will remain present before the court on April 8 and will not go back to Assam until allowed by the court.

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