Published: Fri, October 13, 2017
World | By Paul Elliott

India's top court delays ruling on Rohingya deportation

India's top court delays ruling on Rohingya deportation

The Supreme Court said on Friday that the human rights of Rohingya refugees can not be ignored and there is a need to "strike a balance" when it comes to issues of national security resulting from their stay. The court told the government that no Rohingya refugee should be deported until the next date of hearing in the case.

The Supreme Court on Friday granted more time to all the parties to argue on the deportation of Rohingya refugees.

The petition has been filed by Mohammad Salimullah and Mohammad Shaqir, two UNHCR-registered Rohingyas, challenging the legality of the government's decision to deport Rohingyas and seeking protection under the "principle of non-refoulement".

Last month, the government had filed an affidavit in the apex court in which it said that Rohingyas are illegal immigrants and pose a threat to the national security. "The state has a multi-pronged role", reported local broadcaster India Today.

Mindful of the centre's concern, the court told the petitioner that they were free to straightaway approach the top SC if any contingency situation arose.

'We have to strike a balance.

The refugees are fleeing a military operation in which security forces and Buddhist mobs have killed men, women and children, looted homes and torched Rohingya villages.

Therefore in the hearing of the matter, the court urged to make a balance between both the conditions that is the Human Rights and National Security.

"India's stated policy position in global fora and as mentioned throughout in policy statements and notifications, has been to recognise the distinction between refugees who are forced out for their countries due to persecution and illegal migrants who come in search of economic prospects", he said.

However, Additional Solicitor General Tushar Mehta strongly objected to the court passing any order to that effect.

The Indian government also fears that militant groups can influence Rohingyas and use them anti-national activities.

In a new wave of migration, more than 500,000 Rohingya have fled Myanmar to Bangladesh since a renewed military crackdown began August 25.

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