ARINDAM GUPTA

SILCHAR, Jan 28: For 11-year-old Shahnara, life took a new turn in April last year.


Daughter of Rahim Uddin Barbhuiya and Minara Begam, residents of Lathigram in Udharbond constituency of Cachar, Shahnara was just seven months old when she had to accompany her mother to the Goalpara district detention centre in 2010.


Her mother had been declared a foreigner. After six months, they were shifted to the Kokrajhar detention centre, wherein they had to spend nearly nine years before being lodged in the detention centre inside the Silchar Central Jail in 2019.
Having spent 10 years inside the detention camp or jails across Barak and Brahmaputra valleys, she finally felt the touch of freedom in April 2020, when they were released from the detention centre, courtesy a verdict from the ?Supreme Court to release detainees in Assam who have completed more than two years inside the detention camps on bail, when Covid-19 was at its peak.


“I feel relaxed to be at home now with my parents and siblings and this is an amazing feeling,” Shahanara told this correspondent. Asked about what she aspires to be in life, the little girl, who now studies in a nearby school, said she dreams of becoming a doctor and serve the people in need.


Her mother, Minara, claims they are Indian nationals, but, following the Court’s order, she has to report to the local police station every Wednesday.