Tuesday, 24 April, 2018

Supreme Court to take a call on Rohingyas: Rajnath

Supreme Court to take a call on Rohingyas: Rajnath Supreme Court to take a call on Rohingyas: Rajnath
Connie Andrews | 20 September, 2017, 01:20

Accusing New Delhi of looking at the issue from a religious angle, he said while amending the Foreigners Act in 2015, it gave certain exemptions to Hindus, Sikhs, Parsis, Christians and Jains arriving from Pakistan and Bangladesh but the word Muslim was not included.

The government also told the top court that deporting Rohingya refugees would be an "executive policy decision" and the Supreme Court must not interfere.

The Rohingya are one of Myanmar's many ethnic minorities in the Buddhist-majority nation. There have been temporary settlements for them but the crisis is rising.

The Supreme Court will take a call on the central government's plans to deport Rohingya Muslims, who entered the country "illegally", Home Minister Rajnath Singh said today. The statement highlighted the "serious potential" for an "eruption of violence against the Buddhists who are Indian citizens who stay on Indian soil". Talks that Rohingyas having links with Muslim fundamentalist and terror organization is just an attempt to divert the attention of the people from the real issue.

The debate on the Rohingyas is taking an extreme turn in and outside India.

Hitting out at human rights groups' criticism towards the Centre's stand on the issue, he said: "I request worldwide human rights' bodies to not spread misinformation about India and the Indian govt; protecting the nation is our duty".

The government views members of the ethnic and religious minority as illegal immigrants from Bangladesh and not among the dozens of national ethnicities officially recognized by Myanmar. "There should be no collective punishment". The Office of the United Nations Resident Coordinator in Myanmar told Reuters it was "aware and concerned" about the situation and was discussing it with the Myanmar government.

An estimated 40,000 Rohingyas are present across India including Jammu and Kashmir and Rajasthan states.

Explaining its stand on the principle of Non-Refoulement (which prohibited deportation of refugees) invoked by the petitioners, the Centre submitted that it was a party to the International Covenant of Civil and Political Rights to which the principle did not extend.

Government has filed its affidavit with the Supreme Court on the Rohingya issue.

According to information provided by the UNHCR office here, almost 30 refugees and asylum-seekers from Myanmar are presently in Sri Lanka, among the more than 1,000 from different countries.

More than 400,000 Rohingyas have fled to Bangladesh since August 25, in the wake of a violent military offensive launched after hundreds of Rohingya rebels assaulted police posts.

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