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

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

The Centre told the Apex Court in its 15-page affidavit that presence of Rohingya Muslims in India is a drain on nation's resources and a serious security threat to country.

As the apex court heard a petition challenging the deportation of Rohingya Muslim refugees to Myanmar, the central government told the apex court that this was an essential executive decision taken in the larger national interest.

Terming the ongoing Rohingyas issue as a major challenge from across the border in Myanmar, the BJP leader said the government is handling infiltration and illegal migration with "utmost maturity".

The United Nations says there are 16,000 registered Rohingya in India, but many more are undocumented.

Meantime, police said on Monday that they had arrested a suspected member of al Qaeda who they believed was trying to recruit Rohingya living in the country to fight security forces in Myanmar. There was an organised influx of illegal immigrants from Myanmar through agents and touts facilitating the illegal entry of Rohingyas into India, the government claimed. The Supreme Court bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra, Justices AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud adjourned the matter after the government sought time to file its response till October 3.

The government has security inputs indicating links of Rohingya refugees with Pakistan's ISI, the Islamic State and other extremists groups that want to spread communal and sectarian violence in India.

Nevertheless, eminent lawyers including Kapil Sibal, Rajeev Dhawan, Colin Gonsalves, Ashwani Kumar and Prashant Bhushan and Fali S Nariman appeared in court on Monday to advocate for the cause of Rohingyas.

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"Some Rohingyas are indulging in illegal/anti-national activities, such as mobilisation of funds through hundi/hawala channels, procuring fake Indian identities for other Rohingyas and also indulging in human trafficking", the affidavit read.

Many of those who had fled to India after the earlier spate of violence, were settled in Jammu, Hyderabad, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi-NCR and Rajasthan.

Arguing for deportation of Rohingyas, the government said the Rohingya influx began in 2012 and added that there are at present around 40,000 such refugees in the country.

The plea against deportations was based on grounds of violation of conventions of global human rights.

An estimated 400,000 Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh to escape persecution in Burma since the start of a crackdown there on 25 August.

The demonstrators, protesting amid the full-blown Rohingya refugee crisis in Bangladesh, were stopped several kilometres from the embassy area, Efe news reported.

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