By S. Vinothaa | Malaysiakini

The Immigration Department has signed off on an order to deport Bangladeshi opposition politician MA Quayum.

This is despite the Kuala Lumpur High Court granting a stay of deportation to the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) leader, who turns 61 in three days.

Quayum is a United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) card-holder.

According to documents sighted by Malaysiakini, the deportation order was signed on Jan 24, six days after the High Court’s decision.

Quayum’s family and lawyers were only informed of the order today. It is unclear if he is still in the country or has already been deported.

Lawyer Kee Shu Min told Malaysiakini that she had scheduled a visit to see Quayum at the Immigration detention centre in Semenyih tomorrow.

Meanwhile, lawyer Edmund Bon said they would also be sending a notice to the Immigration Department to not deport the Bangladeshi politician.

He said the deportation was a clear violation of the court order and was likely to be considered contempt of court.

The legal team has also written to the courts to get Quayum’s bid for freedom heard sooner.

The stay of deportation was granted pending a court hearing scheduled for April 5 to hear Quayum’s application for habeas corpus to challenge his unlawful immigration detention.

SUARAM executive director Sevan Doraisamy previously said that Quayum was apprehended in a joint operation conducted by the Malaysian police and the National Security Intelligence (NSI) of Bangladesh on Jan 12 at his residence in Ampang.

He alleged that Quayum’s detention request was part of a systematic crackdown by the Bangladeshi government against political opposition.

Quayum has reportedly been under the Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) programme since 2015.

However, the documents show that his MM2H pass was revoked after he was detained one day after the stay order was issued.