West Bengal’s child rights body today moved the Supreme Court against the Centre’s move to deport all Rohingya Muslims to Myanmar, saying the entire community cannot be branded as terrorists. The plea was filed by West Bengal State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (WBSCPCR) in the apex court which has already fixed a PIL, filed by two Rohingya Muslim refugees challenging their deportation, for hearing on October 3.
Ananya Chakraborty, Chairperson of the rights panel, said the plea has been accepted in the apex court registry and would be heard on the date already fixed. The plea has challenged the notification of the central government asking for identification and deportation of all Rohingyas to Myanmar.
The child rights commission has said that Rohingyas are being “systematically tortured and killed” and the entire community cannot be branded terrorists. Even the United Nations has described them as the “most persecuted community in the world,” it has said.
Earlier, the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), in its affidavit, had termed the Rohingyas as “illegal” immigrants and alleged that some of them were part of a “sinister” design of Pakistan’s ISI and terror groups such as the ISIS. Their presence in the country will pose a “serious” national security threat, the Centre had said, adding that the fundamental right to settle in any part of the country was available only to citizens and not the Rohingyas.
It also categorically stated that the apex court should not invoke its jurisdiction, as the issue of Rohingyas “fell under the exclusive domain of policy decision of the executive”.
The affidavit was submitted as a response to the plea filed by Rohingya immigrants Mohammad Salimullah and Mohammad Shaqir, who had claimed that they had taken refuge in India after escaping from Myanmar due to widespread discrimination, violence and bloodshed against the community there.
Former RSS ideologue and Rashtriya Swabhiman Andolan leader K N Govindacharaya had also moved the Supreme Court seeking to intervene in the pending PIL on Rohingyas. He has opposed the plea of two Rohingya refugees saying they are a burden on country’s resources and pose serious threat to national security.