Centre to file reply on plea challenging Rohingyas deportation

The plea was filed by two Rohingya immigrants, Mohammad Salimullah and Mohammad Shaqir, who are registered refugees under the United Nations High Commission of Refugees (UNHCR),

Published: 18th September 2017 12:46 PM  |   Last Updated: 18th September 2017 12:46 PM   |  A+A-

Bangladesh_Myanmar_At_Raju

A group of Muslim Rohingyas in Ghumdhum, Cox's Bazar weep as Bangladesh border guards (not pictured) order them to leave their makeshift camp and force them out of the country on August 28, 2017. Since 2012, more than 1,000 Rohingya have been killed, some 320,000 live in squalid camps in Myanmar and neighboring Bangladesh, and thousands have embarked on perilous sea voyages to other Southeast Asian countries, according to estimates by the U.S.-based Human Rights Watch and the United Nations. (Photo | AP)

By PTI

NEW DELHI: The Centre today apprised the Supreme Court that it would be filing during the day its response to a PIL challenging deportation of Rohingya Muslims to Myanmar.

A bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud considered the submission of Additional Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing the central government, that the counter affidavit would be filed today itself.

The bench then fixed the PIL and several other interim applications, seeking to intervene in the case for hearing at 2 PM on October 3.

The bench, meanwhile, did not issue notice to the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), which is already seized of the matter and has recently issued notice to the Central government.

Lawyer Prashant Bhushan, appearing for two Rohingya refugees, submitted that NHRC's response be sought in this matter as the independent rights body is already seized of the issue.

The plea, filed by two Rohingya immigrants, Mohammad Salimullah and Mohammad Shaqir, who are registered refugees under the United Nations High Commission of Refugees (UNHCR), said they had taken refuge in India after escaping from Myanmar due to alleged widespread discrimination, violence and
bloodshed against the community there.

The alleged violent attacks have led to an exodus of Rohingya tribals from the western Rakhine state in that country to India and Bangladesh. Many of those who had fled to India after the earlier spate of violence, have settled in Jammu, Hyderabad, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi-NCR and Rajasthan.

The plea said that India has ratified and is a signatory to various conventions that recognise the Principle of "Non-Refoulement', which prohibits deportation of refugees to a country where they may face threat to their lives.

The government has recently raised "serious concern" over reports of renewed violence and attacks in Myanmar and extended its "strong" support to the Myanmarese government at this "challenging moment".

On August 18, the NHRC had issued notice to the Centre over its plan to deport Rohingya immigrants, who have been residing in various parts of India.

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