The Polish student whose visa was cancelled for participating in a protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act moved the Calcutta High Court on Wednesday, seeking a restraining order against the Centre and a recall of its order, PTI reported.
In his petition before the High Court, Kamil Siedczynski asked to restrain the authorities from giving effect to the notice. The notice, issued last week by the Foreign Regional Registration Office, asks Siedczynski to leave India within 14 days, for participating in “anti-government activities” contravening visa rules.
But the student’s advocate, Jayanta Mitra, told the High Court that Siedcynski was “persuaded” to accompany other students of Jadavpur University to an event in the New Market area of Kolkata on December 19. Siedczynski claimed he did so unwittingly and out of curiosity, and added that it was a peaceful protest attended by people from all sections of society. The student said he soon got separated from the crowd and stood on the side as a mere onlooker.
Mitra alleged that the notice issued to Siedczynski was “arbitrary and contrary to principles of natural justice and violative of the fundamental rights guaranteed by the Constitution”. The lawyer said Siedczynski was not given a reasonable opportunity to be heard before the notice was issued.
The Polish student expressed remorse for attending the demonstration and said he had realised his “mistake”. His counsel said he is in the final semester and his examinations are scheduled to be completed by August 2020.
Siedczynski is a student of comparative literature at Jadavpur University and has also been translating several Polish works into Bengali. The student has appealed to the Foreign Regional Registration Office, under the Ministry of Home Affairs, to reconsider its decision.
Last week, a Bangladeshi student at West Bengal’s Visva-Bharati University was asked to leave India for taking part in “anti-government activities” after she posted pictures of Citizenship Act protests on her campus. A German exchange student in Chennai and a Norwegian tourist in Kerala were also asked to leave the country after they participated in events against the Act.