Plea Filed In Delhi High Court Seeking Permission To Hold Peaceful Protests Against Detention Of Indigenous People

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A plea filed at the Delhi High Court sought to direct the Delhi Police to allow peaceful protests. These protests were under the banner of “Black Lives Matter.” This was against the detention of some indigenous people of Biafra.

Brief Facts of the Case

The officials of Knowledge Park 2 Police Station had arrested 2 Biafran individuals. This was on 24 September 2019. They were of Nigerian nationality. The names of the 2 arrested are: Mr. Chima Paul Ugochukwu and Mr. Chinasa Victor Obioha. They had been illegally kept in the Surajpur Police lines in Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh. The Petitioner, Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), had approached the UP Police. They had wanted to hold a meeting with the detained people. Unfortunately, no response had come from the police. 

On 16th June the Petitioner wrote a letter to the Delhi police to conduct peaceful protests. They had requested to hold the protest outside the UP Bhawan on 23 June under the banner of “Black Lives Matter.” The Delhi Police did not respond to their letter at all. Thus, the Petitioner had to move a plea to the High Court of Delhi.

Arguments by the Parties 

The Petitioner alleged that no information had been provided to the family members or relatives about the detention. They contended that neither any person nor a lawyer had been allowed to meet the two people for 8 months. The Petitioner argued that even in the case of expiration of the visa, detention cannot be for more than 8 months. 

The reasons for the arrest were not mentioned by the police. The Petitioner claimed that no information was available to the UP Police about the case. No case was registered against them. The advocates were not given the correct information either. They were forced to meet several officers in the hierarchy to obtain information but it was in vain. They were not allowed to meet the arrested until the end.

The Petitioner argued that:

“owing to the immediate threat to their lives in Nigeria being Biafrans and having raised their voice for the recognition of Biafra they will specifically face persecution at the hands of the Nigerian state and this these persons seek to seek Asylum in India and get a refugee status to protect their lives.”

Prayer 

The Petitioner requested the Court to seek records about the illegal detention. The Petitioner stated that they would conduct a peaceful protest. They claimed that they would ensure the following of safety measures. 

Court’s Decision

The matter would be heard on the 18th of June 2020.


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