Indian Asylum Seeker Mistakenly Caught Up in UK Deportation Row

The UK Home Office has become embroiled in a mistaken identity row over plans to deport an Indian asylum seeker.

Indian Asylum Seeker Mistakenly Caught Up in UK Deportation Row f

"inexperienced case worker who copied and pasted someone else’s details"

The Home Office is facing accusations of incompetence after officials seeking to deport an Indian asylum seeker managed to confuse him in its paperwork with at least three other refugees.

Ranjit Singh was “surprised” to have been variously recorded as being the dependant of a student, an applicant for British citizenship, a successful candidate for temporary leave to remain and a partner of a man he had never met.

The wrong claims about Mr Singh’s status and past life were made in a Home Office letter refusing his application for permanent leave to remain.

In documents provided to him after a subject access request, compelling the Home Office to disclose relevant information.

It is understood Home Office officials had mixed up Mr Singh with three other men of the same name while processing his claim to stay in the UK.

An appeal tribunal due to hear Mr Singh’s asylum case has been adjourned while his lawyers await the correct government paperwork.

Naga Kandiah, of MTC Solicitors, said the Home Office had also managed to breach data protection laws by handing over private information about the other Singhs to his client in their correspondence.

Mr Kandiah said: “Our client’s case is an example of how an inexperienced case worker who copied and pasted someone else’s details without even checking the case.

“They had a year to process the application and did a five-minute job which resulted in a breach of GDPR.”

Mr Singh, who is from a Punjab village in India, first claimed asylum when he arrived in the UK in 2007. It was rejected but he claims not to have been notified at the time.

He lives with his wife Dilrukshi in Hayes, West London.

Mr Singh applied for leave to remain in the UK in 2021 as he wished to register his marriage to her. His application to stay in the UK on human rights grounds was rejected but the letter of refusal contained numerous errors.

Dilrukshi said her husband has been unable to earn money due to his lack of status and had become “mentally down” after two years of waiting for a decision, only for it to contain mistakes about his position.

She said: “When our lawyer said that one reason his application had been rejected is that he had already been married with a gay man we were surprised.

“Then we find out all the other things he was supposed to have done.

“He gets mad, to be honest, he is so upset. It’s not right, this is about people’s lives.”

The Home Office has a large backlog of asylum cases to process.

More than 175,000 asylum seekers are waiting for an initial decision on their application.

The Refugee Council has complained that the delays were “having a devastating impact on the people we work with, whose lives are put on hold indefinitely while they anxiously wait to hear whether they will be allowed to stay in the UK”.

Of asylum appeals resolved in 2022, 51% were allowed, rising from 29% in 2010.

A Home Office spokesperson said: “We do not routinely comment on individual cases.”

Dhiren is a journalism graduate with a passion for gaming, watching films and sports. He also enjoys cooking from time to time. His motto is to “Live life one day at a time.”

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