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Rohingya crisis: UN Secretary General's call and responsibility of India

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05th-Oct-2018       
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MAKING a strong pitch for holding those involved in violence against Rohingyas accountable, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres has said India can help tackle the crisis by backing Bangladesh in humanitarian assistance and using its influence in Myanmar to bring about reconciliation. He also said that to keep Rohingyas in such a "discriminatory situation" is "an invitation for terrorist groups" to exploit the situation.
During her visit to Myanmar in May this year, Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj had offered to help in safe, speedy and sustainable return of Rohingyas, reports our New Delhi correspondent. India has also been helping Bangladesh in providing humanitarian assistance to Rohingyas. But Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Hindu nationalist government has described illegal Rohingya immigrants as posing a national security threat, and ordered state governments last year to identify and deport them. But a UN Human Rights official said the forcible return of the Rohingya was a violation of international law when India sent 7 Rohingyas to Myanmar.
Can India exert any pressure on Myanmar, and especially the Tatmadaw — it's all powerful army? It is quite unlikely that it would do so — considering that it has had one year to influence Myanmar. Unfortunately the necessitates of geo-political strategy ensures that India, like China, will remain mum on the entire issue, as it has no reason to annoy Myanmar and thus give an edge to China.
While Myanmar is not as geo-politically strategic as Bangladesh is to India it is to China--and therefore it follows that India will do what China is doing — which is essentially muttering vague nothings while providing some sort of humanitarian assistance to the Rohingya here. Meanwhile it is Bangladesh which is saddled with the job of providing for the over one million refugees here. Their continued stay is wreaking terrible havoc on the eco-system of Bangladesh.
As our biggest friendly neighbour there is much more that India can do — if it wants to, to ensure that the Rohingyas are safely returned to Myanmar. Inaction in this matter will lead to future generations of Rohingyas becoming terrorists — these camps will become breeding grounds for vengeance on Myanmar. People who have lost everything have nothing more to lose  — their minds are an ideal breeding ground for radical ideas. If nothing is done now Myanmar may regret so casually terrorizing them to come to Bangladesh.                                        


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