New Delhi: Seven Rohingya immigrants, who have been staying in Assam illegally, will be deported to their home country Myanmar Thursday, news agency PTI quoted officials in New Delhi as saying.
This is for the first time Rohingya immigrants would be sent back to Myanmar from India.
Seven Rohingya immigrants will be handed over to Myanmar authorities at Moreh border post in Manipur Thursday, a home ministry official said.
The illegal immigrants have been staying at a detention centre in Silchar, Assam, since 2012, when they were detained by police.
Consular access had been given to Myanmar diplomats, who confirmed the identity of the immigrants, the official said.
Another official said the confirmation of the Myanmarese citizenship of the illegal immigrants came after the government of the neighbouring country verified their addresses in Rakhine State.
Meanwhile, a plea was filed in the Supreme Court to restrain the government from deporting the seven Rohingya Muslims to Myanmar. However, the top court refused for urgent hearing of the petition.
The move comes a day after United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres urged India to support Bangladesh in providing humanitarian assistance to the Rohingya community and influence Myanmar to bring about reconciliation, reported PTI.
“What can India do? Support Bangladesh in helping these people because there is a huge humanitarian problem,” said Guterres, who is currently in India on a three-day visit. “Second, to pressure on Myanmar, the military in Myanmar for reconciliation and create conditions for these people to go back. These people will not go back in present circumstances.”
“I have never seen a community so discriminated in the world as Rohingyas,” Guterres, who arrived here on Monday on his maiden visit to India, said in response to a question on the issue.
Yesterday, a UN lehgal expert had voiced concern over the government’s plan to deport seven Rohingyas to Myanmar where the army is accused of ethnic cleansing of the Muslim minority.
The Indian government told Parliament last year that more than 14,000 Rohingya people, registered with the UN refugee agency UNHCR, stay in India.
However, aid agencies estimate there are about 40,000 Rohingya people in the country.
Hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslims, described by the UN as the most persecuted minority in the world, fled their homes last year to escape an alleged crackdown by the Myanmarese military.
Human rights group Amnesty International has blamed Myanmar’s State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi and the country’s government for “burying their heads in the sand over the horrors unfolding in Rakhine State”.