India keeps tabs on the Rohingya
· Human rights organizations alarmed ·
Various international human rights organizations have expressed serious concern over the fate of the Rohingya people who, in order to escape persecution in Myanmar, have sought refuge in India. A highly-placed police official in Guwahati, in the Indian state of Assam, told the Times of Indiathat everything is ready for the first deportation of the Rohingya from India.
Seven refugees who had been arrested in 2012 and accused of illegally entering the country will be turned over to Myanmar’s border police. Analysts claim that this expulsion could mark the beginning of a sweeping deportation campaign that India would like to begin as soon as possible. New Delhi has not concealed its intentions regarding this Muslim ethnic minority facing persecution in Myanmar: not only does India not want to take in those they consider illegal immigrants, they do not even want to consider granting them refugee status. Rather, India--which does not adhere to the UN Refugee Convention--has affirmed several times that it wants to send all the Rohingya back to their native country, regardless of the fact that the persecution suffered in recent years by this ethnic group has forced them to flee en masse. It is estimated that more than one million Rohingya have fled Myanmar since last August.
Two days ago, while chairing the meeting of the Eastern Zonal Council, the Union Home Minister, Rajnat Singh, reiterated that he had already asked all states to identify Rohingya migrants and collect their biometric data which will be sent to the central security agency. From there,,diplomatic channels will take action to repatriate them. UN Secretary General António Guterres is currently in India and has affirmed that New Delhi could play a significant role in the solution to the crisis, if it would collaborate with Bangladesh in providing humanitarian assistance and use its influence with Myanmar to achieve reconciliation.
St. Peter’s Square
Feb. 18, 2019