Haphazard surveillance adding to the problem

HYDERABAD: Foreigners Regional Registration Office (FRRO), functioning under the Union home ministry and responsible for monitoring the movement of foreigners in the country, does not seem to be doing much to address the menace of overstaying by foreigners. Police claim that they have been cracking down on such nationals, but a consistent effort is missing.

Most cases of trafficking of synthetic drugs and their supply in the city have the involvement of one foreigner or the other, who come to the city either on student or business visas. While some are managing to get their visas extended, a majority of them are staying illegally.

Despite the increasing menace and a series of drug trafficking cases involving overstaying foreign nationals, the FRRO, police and other agencies have restricted themselves to only conducting special drives and that too erratically.

Further, such individuals are not caught unless their involvement is found in any illegal activities or they are caught possession of banned substances. Some of them who are on student visas get the visa extended claiming they have backlogs. But in reality, they neither attend college nor appear for examinations, inquiries revealed.

They adopt various methods to dodge police. Some of them destroy their documents the moment they arrive here and give different identities when caught, leaving the agencies in the dark.

Lack of a constant surveillance is turning into a blessing in disguise for them, bolstered by which they continue their illegal activities.

In the past, FRRO used to serve a ‘Leave India’ notice on overstaying foreign nationals. The street-smart foreigners would relocate to a different city and start their activities, all over again. Even if a Movement Restriction Order is served on them, they will be lodged in detention centres. Deporting them is a herculean task both for police and FRRO, especially because of the fake identities.

While the FRRO was not available to comment on the issue, it was learnt that in view of the increasing menace, it has started issuing ‘Leave India’ notice and movement restriction orders simultaneously so that they are detained and deported, said officials.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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