The Indian government has started identifying Rohingya Muslims who have entered the country from Myanmar for arrest or deportation, Times of India reported on Wednesday.
Rohingya Muslims, fleeing atrocities in Myanmar, have settled in India and are living “illegally in various pockets” including held Kashmir, the Indian daily reported.
A meeting was chaired by India’s Union home secretary Rajiv Mehrishi on Monday during which mechanisms for the detection, arrest and deportation of Rohingya refugees was discussed, TOI reported.
Quoting an official at the Indian home ministry, TOI reported that 40,000 Rohingya have entered the country using three infiltration routes. These include a route through the Bangladesh border, one through the Myanmar border, and by sea.
According to the the home ministry, 5,500-5,700 Rohingya Muslims have settled in India-held Kashmir alone, the daily said. However, the number may be a lot higher, it was added.
While the United Nations Human Rights Commission recognises 14,000 Rohingya settlers in India as refugees, the country does not accept this status, TOI said.
Under the Foreigners Act, Rohingya Muslims seeking refuge in India are considered “illegal migrants.”