The first step to find a solution to a problem is to accept the reality of the problem, as it exists, and then see if something can be done about it. The reality of the situation about Rohingya Muslims is that most people of Burna, both from right and left, want them dead or deported. There seems to be no major political force in Burma, which wants to stand up for their rights. So, there is no hope in asking or even putting pressure on the Burmese government to not commit a genocid against Rohingya Muslims. They simply will not stop, and if anyone tries to stop the army from doing it in Burma, they will lose political power.
As right wing Buddhists have a lot of political power in Burna, and they are defined by their hatred of Rohingya Muslims. So, any protests by people, any concern by world leaders, every effort in this direction, is totally useless. The only solution to this problem seems to be that Rohingya Muslims have to leave Burma. No one can argue that deportation from a poor messed up country like Burma, is better than being killed in it. Now the only natural question is which country they go to, and how can they get to that country.
At present they are going to Bangladesh, but this option does not seem feasible. Bangladesh is overpopulated and they do not want anyone other than Bangladeshi people in it. So, this does not seems to be a practical solution. Bangladeshi government will not accept one million new people in it. The next natural country to go to would have been India, had it been the India of Nehru. India was known to accept and even welcome refugees from all over the world. However, India is currently ruled by an ultra right wing Hindu party, and the only reason they remain in power is because of their anti-Muslim rhetoric and rampant islamophobia in most parts of India. This Indian government certainly does not want any Muslim population living in India, and if they cannot get rid of the existing Muslim population in India, they would certainly not accept any new Muslim population. Their is already talk by India government to deport the Rohingya Muslims, and they would already have deported them, but Burma does not want them either.
So, what is the next country that can accept one million Rohingya Muslims. The simple answer to this question is that there is a country which can do it, and it is Pakistan. Pakistan is not an ideal state, and their is huge persecution of religious minorities there, may be even more than India. This is because the Muslim religious orthodoxy is very powerful in Pakistan. But this same religious orthodoxy will be ready to help Rohingya Muslims, and they can generate enough pressure for the Pakistani government to accept them. So, Pakistan might be a bad place for religious minorities, but it will be a very good place for the Rohingya Muslims. India need to only provide safe passage to Rohingya Muslims to go to Pakistan. This may also solve India’s problem with Rohingya Muslims, as they want to deport them, but there is no place to deport them to, as no one wants them. So, if Pakistan is ready to accept them, India can start by deporting their own Rohingya Muslims population to Pakistan.
So, this seems as the only viable solution. Now the question is how to achieve this. Pressure can be generated first from social media, and then in other forms of media in Pakistan to accept Rohingya Muslims. Pakistan should first accept the Rohingya Muslims living in India, and India can deport them to a place where they are wanted – Pakistan, rather than a place where they will be killed – Burma. This can follow up by a systematic transfer of all Rohingya Muslims to Pakistan via India. It will be good for Pakistani government as they will be seen in good light by the ultra right wing Muslims of Pakistan, and it will be good for India government as by getting rid of a Muslims population from India, they will be seen in good light by ultra right wing Hindu population of India. It will also be good for Burmese government, as they will get rid of Rohingya Muslims, and be seen in good light by the right wing population of Burma. So, this will benefit everyone, and at the end of the day, human lives will be saved.
Other countries can help by providing financial aid for the transfer of Rohingya Muslims to Pakistan, and then extra financial aid to Pakistan, to take care of them. A large part of this aid might be stolen by corrupt politicians in Pakistan, but then this can provide the real motivation for these corrupt politicians to get Rohingya Muslims to Pakistan. So, instead of protesting, everyone can do something meaningful. They can go to social media, and start a campaign for Rohingya Muslims to be accepted in Pakistan, and India to only give them safe passage to Pakistan. From Pakistan other Muslims countries, like Turkey and Iran can also take a part of these people. It is also high time for truly democratic and civilized countries like Canada, to act and accept some Rohingya Muslims as refugees. I have to mention that even if such civilised countries make a symbolic gesture, it will be a very important motivation for other countries to follow. It is important for the citizens of such civilized countries to start campaign on social media for their countries to accept some refugees.
There is something Muslims of Kashmir can also do. Their is a camp of Rohingya Muslims in Jammu, and their is a huge crises of home helpers in Kashmir. So, they can be brought to Kashmir, and each Kashmiri family can adopt one family. They might work just for food, and education to their children. The advantage for Kashmiri Muslims would be that they would get cheep labor, and the advantage for Rohingya Muslims would be that they would get a decent house to live in, and the advantage for the Jammu Hindus would be that they would get rid of a new Muslims population. The Hindus of Jammu do not need to be afraid that this will change the demography of the state. There is no question of changing the demography of the state, as these people are not even citizens of India, and even if they were citizens of India, by living in Kashmir, they do not get rights of Kashmiris. Here again a campaign on Internet is needed to explain this point to them. The Kashmiris need not be arrogant about it, they should face the reality, they are living under Indian government, and at present India is ruled by ultra right wing Hindu government, and this government will care more about Hindus of Jammu than Muslims of Kashmir.
There is also a question of minority Hindu Rohingya, and they cannot go to Pakistan. Bangladesh is not even accepting Rohingya Muslims, so there is no question of them accepting Hindu Rohingya. However, as they are Hindus, the right wing Hindu government of India can certainly give them refugee status in India. They can also give refugee status to all other non-Muslim refugees from Burma, as their main problem is with Muslims, and their main political rhetoric is anti-Muslim.
I would like to clarify one thing for my own reputation. By this article, I do not want to divide communities, and really wish the world was not filled with so much hatred. I really wish all humans lived as one family. But I am a rational person, and I know that I cannot wish things into existence. I face the reality, and try to find the best real solution, which can work. Facing realty, also meaning admitting and accepting those thing, which are not good. That is all what I have done in this article. and now for all people who want to face reality, and really resolve this problem, it is time to act positively.
Dr. Mir Faizal is Adjunct Professor, University of Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada. He is also visiting Professor, University of British Colombia – Okanagan, British Colombia, Canada