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Friday, January 4, 2019 10:54:01 PM
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Forced push back of Rohingyas can't be a wise solution

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05th-Jan-2019       
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INDIA on Thursday deported a five-member Rohingya Muslim family to neighbouring Myanmar, the second such group expelled in four months during a crackdown on illegal immigrants. Amid continuous protest by the local fundamentalist groups, the Rohingyas have been pushed though the preconditions of mass repatriation are not yet ready in Rakhine State. The protesters in India are afraid of Rohingyas' social interaction and long-time staying.
Over the past decade, long before the latest military crackdown began, the Rohingya have been trickling into India, fleeing army excesses in Myanmar. More than one million minority Rohingya population, mostly in Rakhine, have faced discrimination for generations and been denied citizenship rights as they are seen as Bengali settlers rather than Myanmese. The Indian government claims that there are an estimated 40,000 Rohingyas in India. In August 2018, the Indian government announced it was planning to deport all of them, including the 17,000 Rohingya recognised as refugees by the UN. The principle of non-refoulement that prohibits countries from sending back refugees to a country where they might be persecuted does not apply to India as it is not a signatory to the UN Refugee Convention.
When Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Myanmar in September last year, the joint statement did not mention the humanitarian crisis, or even the word Rohingya. Certainly, it is India's latest domestic politics to show disliking to Rohingyas -- a country that does not know to refuse the refugees. There are currently 110,000 Tibetans and 102,000 Sri Lankan Tamils living in India officially as refugees. Thousands of others, from Afghans to Sudanese, can be found across India.
In Bangladesh, more than 1200,000 Rohingyas are now staying in Cox's Bazar district, which is a big burden for us. Despite several attempts, the repatriation process could not be started due to protests from the refugees. They fear of inhumane situation in the concentration camps if they return. After the repatriation process stalled last year, the future of the world's most persecuted minority looks more uncertain than ever.  Nobody can say when they can return safely to their ancestral home. The powerful nations like Russia, China and India, could play a key role in the repatriation process. Forcibly pushing them back to Myanmar cannot be a wise solution.


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