Home Minister Rajnath Singh said on Thursday that Rohingya Muslims are illegal immigrants and not refugees who had applied for asylum in India. Mr. Singh’s statement drew a sharp rebuttal from the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) chairperson H.L. Dattu. The retired Chief Justice of India said the human rights body was helping the Rohingya on “humanitarian grounds” as they faced persecution in Myanmar.
Addressing a seminar organised by the NHRC, Mr. Singh said “We have to think about the human rights of our own people before talking about the human rights of people from other countries.”
“The Home Ministry has clarified its position through its affidavit [in the Supreme Court] that they are illegal immigrants and they will be deported. The Rohingya are not refugees. There is a procedure to get refugee status and none of them has followed this procedure. No Rohingya has received asylum in India nor has anyone applied for it. They are illegal immigrants,” he said.
After Mr. Singh’s address, Justice (Retd.) Dattu told reporters, “We cannot comment on the Government’s policies. We are helping them [the Rohingyas] because they face threat in Myanmar. I look at them as human beings, their rights being violated. They have to be protected.”
Mr. Singh said India would not be violating any international law if it deports Rohingya as it is not a signatory to the U.N.’s 1951 Refugees Convention.
The NHRC, quoting a report in The Hindu on the Centre’s plan to deport the Rohingya, recently issued a notice to the Centre.
Sep 27, 2020Bangladesh is hosting more than one million Rohingya, a mainly Muslim minority community who are stateless, most of whom fled following a wave of violence in Myanmar’s Rakhine state in 2017. “More than three years have elapsed. Regrettably, not a single Rohingya could be repatriated. The problem was created by Myanmar, and its solution must […]
Sep 26, 2020