The Centre has expressed its readiness before the Madurai Bench of Madras High Court to repatriate an Indian prisoner languishing in a prison in Sri Lanka in a plea seeking to bring him back to India.
A petition filed by Meharunisha of SP Pattinam, Ramanathapuram district, came up for hearing before a division bench of Justices K Kalyanasundaram and B Pugalendhi on Tuesday.
The petitioner stated that her husband S Rafiyudeen, a traditional fisherman, was falsely implicated in a drug case by the Sri Lankan police on February 24 in 2013 and lodged in prison at Wellikada, Sri Lanka after he’s sentenced to life imprisonment on March 1 in 2016. Due to depletion in fish catch, he took up garment business between India and Sri Lanka, legally. At the instigation of one JJ Samsun Nilufa, the petitioner’s husband was falsely implicated in the drug case. But, her husband could not engage a counsel in Sri Lanka to conduct the case due to poverty and the petitioner said she was left with the difficult task of bringing up her daughter and a son. Lack of proper legal assistance compelled him to admit the guilt and was convicted, unfortunately and languishing in the prison for the past 9 years with his ‘ID U30-768’. But despite sending several representations to the Indian High Commission and Sri Lankan High Commission for transfer of the prisoner from Sri Lanka to India as per the India –Sri Lanka joint declaration, there’s no progress.
The Union government counsel said talks were held with a high level committee, Colombo, Sri Lanka to repatriate the prisoner to Tamil Nadu, India and conveyed the need to send two police personnel from the state to escort the prisoner back to Tamil Nadu.
The bench directed Tamil Nadu government to submit a report regarding arranging an escort team.