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Britain to deport two Indian illegal immigrants


Britain to deport two Indian illegal immigrants

Leicester, June 9, 2010

Two Indian illegal immigrants who spent months on a roadside pavement here are now awaiting deportation, though the case of one of them is still caught in an official wrangle.

Sarbjit Singh, 32, is ready to be sent home shortly after the UK Border Agency secured an agreement with the Indian authorities for his return. He has already been handed over to the agency.

Singh said he had paid some agents to bring him to Britain seven or eight years ago. Then a gang of men robbed him of his identity papers. "I don't want anything from the British government. I just want to go home. I was able to work for some time, but thereafter there was no work and I became homeless."

However, there are still complications in the case of the second man, Ashok Masah, 44. He too has been detained by the agency, but his case may drag on because he is simply not communicating with anyone.

An immigration wrangle between the two countries delayed their deportation till now. The Indian immigration authorities so far had refused to allow them to re-enter their country of birth because both men had lost all forms of identification, including their passports.

As a result, both men were living on the pavement on Green Lane Road in the Spinney Hills locality for the last four months. They refused to vacate that stretch of the pavement next to a factory's ventilation system that blows out hot air keeping them warm. The pair refused all help from the Leicester City Council as well as community leaders and survived on whatever food people from around the area gave them regularly.

Leicester East MP Keith Vaz took up their case with the Home Office. Eventually the deadlock was broken Monday after which the two men were handed over to the agency.

A spokesperson for the UK Border Agency said: "I can confirm both men have been detained and we will be looking to remove them to India."