India to begin deportations of Rohingya Muslims to Myanmar

Police personnel seen around the India Myanmar border. Image courtsey Sunzu Bachaspatimayum

Police personnel seen around the India Myanmar border. Image courtsey Sunzu Bachaspatimayum

The Supreme Court Thursday allowed the deportation of seven Rohingyas, who have illegally migrated to Assam in India, to their country of origin Myanmar.

"Seven Myanmarese nationals have been deported today".

The Rohingya immigrants will be handed over to the Myanmar authorities in Moreh border post in Manipur on Thursday.

The top court said that these Rohingya were convicted by the competent court under the Foreigners Act and were held to be as illegal immigrants.

Having considered the prayer, we would not like to interfere with the decision taken.

Initially, the bench asked Bhushan to file the plea and on being told that the application has already been filed, it said, "We will peruse the file and the decide"'.

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India deportedseven Rohingya Muslims that had fled their native Myanmar back to their country on Thursday, sparking concerns that the move could endanger their lives and violate worldwide laws that protect refugees.

During the hearings, the Centre told the Supreme Court that Myanmar has accepted the Rohingyas as their citizens and has agreed to take them back.

In a separate statement issued by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, Tendayi Achiume, the UN Special Rapporteur on racism, said: "The Indian Government has an worldwide 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 the necessary protection".

"The Indian government has an worldwide 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 the necessary protection", UN Special Rapporteur on racism, Tendayi Achiume, said in a statement.

The Centre also informed the court that Myanmar has issued a certificate of identity to the seven immigrants along with one-month visa to facilitate their deportation.

A large number of Rohingya refugees, since then, have taken shelter in India and Bangladesh, and are staying in refugee camps, often raising security concerns.

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Bhushan added that even United Nations have termed it was a worst kind of genocide in which many Rohingya have been killed and their properties destroyed.

Achiume said India risked breaching its worldwide legal obligations by returning the men to possible harm.

The U.N. statement also said that conditions in Myanmar were not "conducive for safe, dignified and sustainable returns for Rohingya".

"The government is making provisions for all of them to be sent back. This decision negates India's proud tradition of providing refuge to those fleeing serious human rights violations", said Amnesty India.

It is wrong, they haven't been recognised, Prashant Bhushan replied, saying it was the responsibility of the court.

To which the CJI remarked, "You need not remind us what's our responsibility", before dismissing the petition.

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