New Delhi: The Centre has asked the
Maharashtra government to withdraw a case slapped against
Binayak Sen`s wife Ilina for her alleged failure to inform the
police about the participation of foreign delegates at a
conference in the state.
An FIR against Ilina was filed after some foreign
delegates arrived in Wardha to attend an academic conference
organised by the Indian Association for Women`s Studies (IAWS)
and the Mahatma Gandhi Antarrashtriya Vishwavidyalaya (MGAV)
Ilina, an executive committee member of IAWS and head
of MGAV`s Women`s Studies Department, was booked under
sections 7 and 14 of the Foreigners Act. The police also
arrested the owner of a local hotel where some foreigners were
staying on account of the management`s failure to inform them
of their arrival.
The Foreigners Act requires hotel keepers and other
persons who own, occupy or control the premises where
foreigners are accommodated to submit such information to the
authorities in a prescribed format known as `Form C`.
"It is unclear how (Ilina) Sen has been booked under
the Act given that the relevant provisions apply only to
persons who furnish lodging to foreigners for payment. So, the
Home Ministry has requested the state government to withdraw
the case filed against Sen," an official said.
Full political and security clearance from the
Ministries of Home Affairs and the External Affairs had been
obtained in advance for the participation of the foreign
delegates who came from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.
The FIR filed by the ATS Nagpur Unit notes that Form
`C` as prescribed under the Foreigners Act has not been filed
by the university.
However, Form `C` pertains only to `hotel arrival
information` and does not contemplate the present situation in
Ilina`s husband Binayak has been convicted recently by
a Raipur court for helping Maoists.