167 il­le­gal In­dian im­mi­grants land at Am­rit­sar

Hindustan Times (Jalandhar) - - HTSPOTLIGH­T - HT Cor­re­spon­dent let­ter­schd@hin­dus­tan­times.com

Strict ac­tion should be taken against the travel agent who charged ₹21 Lakh from us and ₹1 lakh ex­tra for re­turn­ing my son’s pass­port. GURSEWAK SINGH, father of a youth from Muk­t­sar

AM­RIT­SAR: As many as 167 In­di­ans who had en­tered the United States (US) and were liv­ing il­le­gally, have been de­ployed through a spe­cial char­tered flight that landed at Sri Guru Ram Das Jee In­ter­na­tional Air­port in Am­rit­sar on Tues­day.

Of the 167 In­di­ans de­ported, 71 are from Haryana and 67 from Pun­jab. The re­main­ing hail from other states. The char­tered flight, run by the ICE air op­er­a­tions, an air trans­porta­tion arm of the US agency en­trusted with the task to re­move il­le­gal mi­grants from the Amer­i­can soil, landed at 4pm at the Am­rit­sar air­port, where they were screened by the health depart­ment.

As many as 92 In­dian im­mi­grants were de­tained by the US Cus­toms and Bor­der Pro­tec­tion per­son­nel in Texas af­ter they il­le­gally en­tered the US from Mex­ico.

There were 21 de­ten­tions from New York, and 22 each from At­lanta and San Fran­cisco.

Aj­nala SDM Deepak Bha­tia said all pas­sen­gers are be­ing sent to their re­spec­tive dis­tricts in Pun­jab and those be­long­ing to other states will be taken away by ve­hi­cles of their re­spec­tive states.

He said that ev­ery­one will be quar­an­tined in their re­spec­tive states and dis­tricts.

“As many as 21 men have been taken to Swami Vivekanand Drug De-ad­dic­tion and Re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion Cen­tre, a govern­ment quar­an­tine cen­tre in Am­rit­sar for now. From here, youths of other re­gions will be sent to their re­spec­tive dis­tricts,” said an of­fi­cial.

PAR­ENTS SEEK AC­TION AGAINST TRAVEL AGENTS

Mother of Meetka­mal Singh, 20, of Bho­lath in Ka­purthala dis­trict, said, “A travel agent gave us as­sur­ance that he will take my son to Mex­ico from where he will help him en­ter the US and charged Rs 26 Lakh. My son went to Mex­ico on a six-month vis­i­tor visa on April 25. He told us that he crossed over to the US side by jump­ing the wall at bor­der. How­ever, he and oth­ers were caught.” She said, “He told us that he was kept at a check­post and the US per­son­nel had asked him to be ready to be de­ported.”

“I am not con­cerned about the loss of money. I’m happy that my son has re­turned home safe. But he had to spend days in the US govern­ment’s cus­tody un­der tough cir­cum­stances. He told us over the phone that he was beaten up. I ap­peal to all par­ents not to send their wards to the US in any il­le­gal way through these travel agents,” she added.

Father of another youth, Gursewak Singh of Mukat­sar, said, “Strict ac­tion should be taken against the travel agent who charged Rs 21 Lakh from us and Rs 1 lakh ex­tra for re­turn­ing my son’s pass­port.”

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