New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Wednesday sought the government`s response on a petition seeking grant of asylum to 151 Hindus from Pakistan who are facing deportation following expiry of their pilgrimage visas.
A bench of acting Chief Justice AK Sikri and Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw issued notices to the External Affairs Ministry and the Home Ministry and sought their responses by February 29, 2012.
The court also directed the government to stay the deportation of the 151 Pakistan nationals till it arrives at a decision on the issue.
The order came in response to a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by Akhil Bharat Hindu Mahasabha seeking the court`s direction to the government to provide political asylum or extension of stay in India to the 151 Pakistani Hindus.
The petition said that a total of 151 Pakistan Hindus entered India in different batches last year on one-month pilgrimage visas issued by the Indian consulate at Islamabad.
The petition stated that the validity of the visas had expired and the 151 Pakistan nationals face threat of deportation.
According to the petitioner, a plea has also been made to the Prime Minister and the National Human Rights Commission that the lives of the Pakistani Hindus would be in danger if they are sent back.