New Delhi, Feb 7 (IANS) The Delhi High Court on Tuesday while granting four weeks time to the Centre to response on a plea by Sweden-based Professor of Indian origin, Ashok Swain, against barring of his Overseas Citizen of India card (OCI card), listed the matter for the next hearing on April 27.
The court granted time after the counsel for the Central government sought more time to file its reply.
On December 8, a single-judge bench of Justice Prathiba M. Singh had asked the Centre to respond within four weeks and had posted the matter for hearing on Tuesday.
Swain is a faculty member of peace and conflict research at the Department of Peace and Conflict Research at Sweden's Uppsala University.
In his plea, he has mentioned that his OCI card was cancelled in February 2022 as he criticised the current Indian government.
He states that he has not delivered any inflammatory speech.
An OCI card is issued to a foreign national of Indian origin, who is allowed to live and work in India for an indefinite period.
Swain had argued that his card was cancelled on the alleged premise that he was indulging in inflammatory speeches and anti-India activities, however, there were no specific instances or materials to prove the same.
'It is submitted that the petitioner has never engaged in any inflammatory speeches or Anti-India activities. As a scholar it is his role in society to discuss and criticise the policies of government through his work,' Swain's petition read.
It added: 'Being an Academician, he analyses and criticises certain policies of the present government, mere criticism of the policies of the current ruling dispensation shall not tantamount to anti-India activities under Section 7D(e) of the Citizenship Act, 1955.'
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