Supreme Court Should Not Intervene On Rohingya Refugees, Says Centre

The affidavit said that India is not a signatory to the United Nations convention relating to status of refugees.

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Supreme Court Should Not Intervene On Rohingya Refugees, Says Centre

The centre said medical facilities are being provided to Rohingya refugees in all health care centres


New Delhi:  The centre on Friday asked the Supreme Court not to intervene in the deportation of Rohingya Muslims, saying any direction by the top court on the subject would not be in the national interest.

In its affidavit filed in the Supreme Court, the centre has said that India is already facing serious problems of infiltration because of its porous border with other countries which is the root cause of spread of terrorism in the country and takes "thousands of lives" of citizens and security personnel.

Securing the borders of any sovereign nation in accordance with law is an essentially function and this court should not issue any direction not only to the central government but also to all states having a common border, it said.

The affidavit said that India is not a signatory to the United Nations convention relating to status of refugees. Considering the very peculiar geographical situation - India sharing its land border with China, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, and Myanmar - it is not in the interest of national security for this court to issue a direction to stop their deportation. It also said the role of the Border Security Force or BSF was to ensure security of the nation by preventing unauthorised entry of foreigners and prevent trans-border crimes including smuggling and other illegal activity.

The centre also denied allegations that the Border Security Force was using chilli powder and stun grenades to stop the refugees from entering India.

The affidavit said the steps taken by any border guarding force is strictly as per law, in larger public interest and in the interest of nation. Denying violation of human rights, the centre said all agencies tasked with the function of guarding the borders are discharging their duties in accordance with law and complying with human rights in larger national interest.

On providing medical facilities to Rohingyas who have taken refuge in various states, the centre said medical facilities are being provided to them in all health care centres. On giving identity cards to Rohingya refugees, the centre said it is essentially an issue in the domain of policy making and governance by executive. There cannot be issuance of ID card to any refugeee as there was no such law passed by the parliament.

On treating Sri Lankan refugees and Rohingya on par, the centre said the grant of certain facilities to Sri Lankan refugees has its genesis in the Indo-Ceylon agreement of 1964 and hence both refugees cannot be treated alike.

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