SC allows deportation of 7 Rohingyas to Myanmar

Evarado Alatorre
Octubre 4, 2018

Having considered the prayer, we would not like to interfere with the decision taken.

The Rohingya approached the Supreme Court after India's junior home affairs minister, Kiren Rijiju, told parliament past year that state governments had been asked to identify and deport people who entered the country illegally, including Rohingya.

India on Thursday deported seven Rohingya immigrants, who have been staying in Assam illegally, to their country of origin Myanmar, in a first such move with regard to the people from the Rakhine province of the neighbouring country.

The seven Rohingya men will be taken to Moreh border where they will be handed over to Myanmar authorities. The plea was being heard by the bench headed by CJI Ranjan Gogoi.

Bhushan mentioned the matter Wednesday before Gogoi, who said that no matter could be mentioned unless there was urgency to it.

In response to concerns over radicalisation among the Rohingya, Guterres emphasised what intelligence officials in India privately admit: "'Fortunately there aren't many Rohingyas, who have been recruited, and we have been able to avoid the situation so far".

The plea said Mohammad Youns, Sabbir Ahamed, Mohammad Jalal, Mohammad Salam, Mokbul Khan, Rahim Uddin and Jalal Uddin were caught by the police from the Shilchori-Nagatila area in 2012 for illegal entry, remanded in custody and detained in the Silchar Jail.

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The fresh plea said that the decision to deport was in "grave violation" of India's global obligation and moreover, the situation in Myanmar was extremely risky for the Rohingyas to return and they are likely to be subjected to torture and even killed.

The Centre's move, Bhushan said Wednesday, has drawn criticism from the United Nations, which said their forcible return could mean a violation of global law.

The bench was hearing petitions including the two filed by Zaffar Ullah and two Rohingyas - Mohammad Salimullah and Mohammad Shaqir. Less than 15,000 are registered with the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees.

Officially, the United Nations identified 14,000 Rohingya Muslims living in India, a sharp contrast from the Home Ministry's estimates at about 40,000.

In spite of not being a signatory to the 1951 UN Convention on refugees, India has time and again opened its borders and welcomed waves of refugees fleeing political and religious persecution or violent armed conflict from Tibet, Bangladesh, Afghanistan and Sri Lanka.

Almost 1 million Rohingya have fled genocidal violence and persecution in Myanmar since 2012.

In June, the Home Ministry wrote a letter to the Jammu and Kashmir government, saying, "Such illegal migrations poses serious challenges and has security implications since some of the migrants have been found to have indulged in illegal activities and are vulnerable to radicalisation".

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