In a first, India Thursday deported seven Rohingya immigrants to Myanmar. The seven illegal immigrants, lodged in Assam jail since 2012, were handed over to the Myanmar authorities in Moreh border post in Manipur today. Earlier in the day, the Supreme Court refused to intervene and stop their deportation.
Those deported are Md Jamal, Mohbul Khan, Jamal Hussain, Md Yonus, Sabir Ahmed, Rahim Uddin and Md Salam, all in the age bracket of 26-32 years, a Cachar district official said. They were apprehended in July 2012 for violating the Foreigners’ Act and were placed in detention at the Silchar Central Jail since then.
The nationality of the immigrants was confirmed after the Myanmar government verified their addresses in Rakhine State, another official said, reported PTI.
The process was initiated after Myanmar diplomats confirmed the identity of the immigrants, an official said. .
India’s decision to send back the seven immigrants has drawn criticism from the United Nations. “The Indian government has an international legal obligation to fully acknowledge the institutionalised discrimination, persecution, hate and gross human rights violations these people have faced in their country of origin and provide them with the necessary protection,” the UN’s Special Rapporteur on racism, Tendayi Achiume, said in a statement.
Rejecting the plea to stop the handover process, a three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi said the seven were found as illegal immigrants by the court earlier and that Myanmar has already accepted them as its nationals.
Arguing for the petitioners, senior advocate Prashant Bhushan said it was the responsibility of the court to protect the Rohingya. He alleged that the worst kind of genocide has taken place in Myanmar in which over 10,000 people were killed.