Since the Federal Court decision that came down we decided not to pursue the issue that I am not a citizen in front of the appeal board. We indicated that we would be challenging the OHIP regulation that they were using against me.
OHIP argued that the appeal board cannot make constitutional remedies to invalidate a regulation or law.
We made the argument that there is a caveat to the general rule that says that for a matter where a determination has been made on health care status prior to 2002 you can proceed to challenge the law. We also were told of a recent court decision that says that the appeal board must respect the charter in interpreting its rules.
The matter is now adjourned until February 24 after submissions by us and the government. The hearing will be in Ottawa.
“Deepan is currently appealing the state’s refusal to grant him health care coverage. We know that the denial of coverage was triggered by OHIP’s conversation with Immigration Canada. The Minister has since day one in Deepan’s case had the authority to acknowledge Deepan as a Canadian citizen or to grant him such status. Knowing that Deepan cannot be deported from this country, his denial of health care simply adds insult to injury. In view of the Minister’s response to the recent Federal Court decision of July 4, 2014 on refugee health care and his unwillingness to abide by all aspects of the decision it appears that Deepan, like refugees to Canada, is being subjected to cruel and unusual treatment by virtue of an intentional effort by the Minister to deny him health care.” – Yavar Hameed, Counsel for Deepan Budlakoti
Deepan and his committee and supporters are still waiting for the Federal Court to rule on his motion, heard on June 16th. If successful, the motion will force the Canadian government to admit that their actions violated the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and caused Deepan undue hardship. It would also force the government to recognize Deepan as a Canadian citizen.
The ruling is expected in the following month, possibly not until September. We’ll keep you posted!
Deepan and about 50 supporters rallied outside the courthouse on Monday, 16 June 2014 in advance of a Federal Court hearing to have Deepan’s Canadian-ness recognized by the government.
To see full photo album of the rally, click here.
The Federal Court will give its response in the coming weeks or months. Possibly not til around September. We will keep you posted!
Pack the Court house!
Bring your bodies and voices to show your support for this crucial moment in Deepan’s case. After over a year of living in precarious, stateless limbo, pending deportation, Deepan finally has a date for this landmark Federal Court hearing.
When? Monday, June 16th, 2014 Demo: 8:30am Hearing: 9:30am
Where? 301 Wellington St. (Supreme Court Building, West Courtroom). Ottawa, Unceded Algonqiun Terrritory
What does this mean?
After months of preparation, Deepan’s legal team will argue that Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) has breached Deepan’s constitutional rights by making him stateless. If successful, the Federal Court of Canada will force Citizenship and Immigration Canada to restore Deepan’s citizenship.
We need your support!
With over 1,000 individuals across multiple borders, countless unions, grassroots groups, civil liberty and non-profit organizations backing Deepan and his struggle for justice, let’s pack the courthouse and demonstrate the magnitude of support that exists for him and his struggle for justice!
Can’t come for the full hearing? Show up at 8:30 for a press scrum, in opportunity to show and voice your support. Bring signs in support of Deepan!
Coming from a different city? Contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at: 613.265.1364 to coordinate rides.
We hope to see you there!
Justice for Deepan Support Committee
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Dear friends & allies,
Today is International Human Rights Day. This year’s Human Rights Day specifically commemorates the twentieth anniversary of the Vienna Declaration with a “commitment to intensify our efforts to fulfill our collective responsibility to promote and protect the rights and dignity of all people everywhere”. As stated by Amnesty International in their letter of support to us, the heavy handed action that this government has taken to render Deepan stateless is in direct violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to which Canada is a signatory.
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& other updates from the Justice for Deepan campaign
**scroll down to see what you can do**
Five members of the Justice for Deepan collective, including Deepan, paid a visit to MP Pierre Poilievre on Friday. This is the man who is supposed to represent Deepan in Parliament. The delegation asked the office to set up a meeting to discuss Deepan’s situation. Before the end of the day, the response came by email: “While I understand the difficulty of the situation Mr. Budlakoti is in, unfortunately there is nothing our office can do to intervene.”
Photos and details. (Stay tuned, it won’t stop there!)
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Deepan Budlakoti is an Ottawa-born man who is facing deportation to India, a country where he has never lived, has no family and is not even a citizen. The only thing stopping his deportation at this point is that India is refusing to issue a travel document for him. In the meantime, his life is in limbo: he can’t work without a work permit, he is under a curfew and obliged to live with his parents, and has no access to basic social services.
Deepan’s case exposes the injustice of the immigration system in an extreme way. Please take the following simple actions to show your solidarity with Deepan and opposition to this systemic injustice:
1. Add your name and/or the name of your organization to the Statement in Support of Deepan and against Double Punishment
2. If you are on facebook, like our facebook page