The Indian government has told the country's top court that some of the Rohingya who have fled Myanmar are a serious security threat, as it sought to justify moves to deport up to 40,000 of the community from India.
"The government submitted to court that it must not interfere with the executive policy decision on deporting the Rohingya and the court had no jurisdiction on the matter", said Prashant Bhushan, a lawyer who took the case on behalf of two Rohingya refugees in Delhi.
Spelling out the problems illegal immigrants were posing, the Centre further said that some Rohingyas were indulging in illegal activities such as mobilization of funds through hawala channels, procuring fake identify documents-PAN (permanent account number) and voter card-and indulging in human trafficking.
The government said it had received intelligence that linked some Rohingya Muslims to Pakistan's ISI spy agency and the Islamic State extremist group, making them a "serious threat".
The affidavit states that it has been "found by the Central Government that numerous Rohingyas figure in the suspected sinister designs of ISIS/other extremist groups who want to achieve their ulterior motives in India including that of flaring up communal and sectarian violence in sensitive areas of the country". "It is our sovereign duty to protect our citizens and national security and we will take steps against Rohingyas according to this only", Kiren Rijiju, India's Minister of State for Home Affairs said in a different function in New Delhi.
"There are elephants in the forest, close to the place where many Rohingya refugees are clearing forest to make huts, police official Chailau Murma said". It further said that the fundamental right to reside and settle in any part of the country is available to citizens only and illegal refugees can not invoke the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court to enforce the right.
Explaining its stand on the principle of Non-Refoulement (which prohibited deportation of refugees) invoked by the petitioners, the Centre submitted that it was a party to the International Covenant of Civil and Political Rights to which the principle did not extend.
The hearing on the matter has been adjourned for October 3 by the court.
The plea against deportations was based on grounds of violation of conventions of worldwide human rights.
The government also claimed that there is an "organised network of touts operating in Myanmar and West Bengal and Tripura to facilitate the influx of illegal Rohingya" refugees into India.
The Rohingya have been fleeing Buddhist-dominated Myanmar for decades.
Four American tourists who were attacked with acid at a train station in Marseille have been identified as college students. In previous incidents in Marseille, a driver rammed into two bus stops last month , killing a woman, USA Today reported .
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