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MHA order on Myanmar refugees discriminatory: Mizoram group

A person sits on the stairs in New Delhi on March 23, 2021 during a vigil to pay tribute to people who died in Myanmar after the military coup.   | Photo Credit: Reuters

A group representing ethnically related communities across the India-Myanmar border said the Centre’s order to prevent Myanmar nationals from entering India was discriminatory.

The Zo Reunification Organisation (ZORO) asked the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) to revoke its March 10 order directing four north-eastern States bordering Myanmar to deport people from the neighbouring country who have taken refuge in India following the military coup in February.

The Mizoram-based ZORO seeks the reunification of the Zo ethnic people of India, Myanmar and Bangladesh. The constituents of this group are Mizo, Kuki, Zomi and Chin people. The Chins are mostly in Myanmar.

“Thousands of people from Bangladesh and other countries have illegally migrated to India in the past and the Central government accepted them as refugees and provided them with asylum instead of deporting them,” ZORO president R. Sangkawia said.

“But the Indian government has ordered four north-eastern States bordering Myanmar to identify and deport Myanmar nationals who have taken refuge in the country. This is clear discrimination against the community,” he said.

The four States are Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Manipur and Mizoram that together share a 1,643 km border with Myanmar.

Members of ZORO burnt copies of the MHA order in Mizoram capital Aizawl on Monday to protest the Centre’s discriminatory order.

“The Centre is preventing our brothers and sisters facing a humanitarian crisis from coming to India because it has already provided shelter to Chakma and Bengali people from Bangladesh,” Mr Sangkawia said.

ZORO youth wing president L. Ramdingliana Renthlei said sending the Myanmar nationals during a crisis period in their home country would be tantamount to killing them.

Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga had earlier written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to say that the MHA advisory was not acceptable to the State. He also said India cannot turn a blind eye to the humanitarian crisis in Myanmar and Mizoram cannot remain indifferent to the sufferings of the Zo ethnic people.

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Printable version | Apr 11, 2021 8:13:13 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/mha-order-on-myanmar-refugees-discriminatory-mizoram-group/article34152518.ece

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