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Rohingya Refugees facing new onslaught in India

Munawar Zaman
Press TV, New Delhi

In this Rohingya refugee camp in the outskirts of New Delhi there is an utter panic and the residents are fearful even going out to buy the essentials.

They say many are been chased, intimidated and usually police and other agencies visit their camps to monitor their movements. Ali Johar a young Rohingya refugee says several have been arrested in the recent months and put into jails for illegally entering India saying the whole community is in utter despair.

Fearful of possible arrest and expulsion, scores of refugees have gone into hiding across the Indian subcontinent while others have entered Bangladesh amid a mounting hate campaign against the community in India. The destitute community who has escaped what the UN described genocide is struggling for existence amid international silence about their plight. An estimated 40 thousand are living in India.

The community has faced a brutal crackdown by the army in their country such as murder, rape, child killings, arbitrary arrests, forced disappearances as well as destruction of entire Rohingya villages. Now many fear that the military coup might make the situation even worse.

Some reports suggest hundreds of Rohingya are being held in Indian jails on charges of illegal entry and have no proper judicial support. Their men are unable to find work due to lack of identity cards and threats of intimidation by law enforcement agencies force men to stay at their camps.

Anti Rohingya sentiments have risen since the emergence of Hindu nationalist government of BJP in 2014. Since then many anti Rohingya campaigns and Hindu groups have been demanding their expulsion while the government describes them a security threat. Observers say the Rohingya refugees in particular have in the past and present being used largely for political reasons in this part of the world.

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