No Looking Back on Deporting Rohingyas: Indian Government Tells Apex Court

Rohingya refugees are a threat to national security says Centre’s draft of affidavit to SC

The government said in a statement to the court that the Rohingya are "illegal" immigrants and some of them pose "a very serious and potential threat to the national security of India".

As the Myanmar government does not recognise the Rohingyas as its citizens, in general, it will be hard for India to deport them.

Mukesh Mittal, a senior home ministry official, said the Supreme Court must allow the government to take a decision in the wider interests of the country since some of the Rohingya have an extremist record.

"Illegal influx of Rohingyas, in significant numbers, has started into the territory of India since 2012-13 and the Central Government has contemporaneous from security agencies inputs and other authentic material indicating linkages of some of the unauthorised Rohingya immigrants with Pakistan-based terror organisations and similar organisations operating in other countries", the Centre said.

The government also said there was a "serious possibility of eruption of violence against Buddhists in India by radicalized Rohingya".

"It is submitted that continuance of Rohingyas' illegal immigration into India and their continued stay in India, apart from being absolutely illegal, is found to be having serious national security ramifications and has serious security threats".

There are about 16,000 UNHCR-certified Rohingya refugees in India.




The Centre outlined its stand on the Rohingya issue in an affidavit it filed in the Supreme Court on Monday.

In its last hearing on September 11, the top court had agreed to the plea of Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Tushar Mehta, representing the Centre, that the matter be heard on September 18.

It says the Rohingya can not use the 1951 Refugee Convention or the 1967 Protocol Relating to the Status of Refugees since India was not a signatory to either. It is submitted that this obligation is binding only in respect of the States which are parties to the Convention.

Any government policy violative of the fundamental rights would be questioned by the Supreme Court, the All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) leader said.

An estimated 40,000 Rohingya Muslims, including the petitioners, live in India and are registered with the United Nations refugee agency in India.

The Rohingya usually migrate to India through a rather porous border to escape persecution in their native Rakhine state in Myanmar, where they have been denied citizenship rights.

The government has stuck to its claim that the Rohingyas - one of the world's most persecuted ethnic minorities - are "illegal immigrants" and should be sent back to Myanmar.

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