Rohingya refugees in Delhi face homelessness and potential deportation

The Central government of #India has clashed with the government of #NewDelhi regarding the resettlement of #Rohingya refugees. The Central government, promising to resettle the refugees in Delhi, had to retract its statement after Delhi’s Deputy Chief Minister, Manish Sisodia, objected to not being involved in the decision-making process. This conflict is a part of the ongoing political tussle between the two governments. However, it puts refugees’ lives in further jeopardy.⁣

The #BJP government in the central ministry developed contentious relations with the #AAP government of New Delhi in recent times. The parties will be opposing each other in upcoming elections and have thrown accusations against each other on multiple issues, including refugee issues. The Ministry of Urban Affairs announced on 18th August that they plan to provide Rohingyas with flats and police protection in Delhi. This was done to rehabilitate refugees whose houses had burnt down in June this year. Hours after the announcement, Sisodia accused the Central Ministry of forcing refugees into the city without consulting the Delhi government. Soon, the Central government denied such decisions and announced that the #refugees would be kept in detention centres until #deportation.⁣

Before this incident, several media reports showed how the refugees living in Delhi lacked basic facilities like water and electricity. While India is not a signatory of the UN’s Refugee Convention, it signed multiple international treaties which ensure basic rights for every individual within its territory, including refugees. However, national politics have often interfered with the fulfilment of such international laws. The anti-#Muslim rhetoric popularised by the Far-right #Hindu groups also makes it near-impossible for Rohingyas to receive any assistance and relief.⁣

Established refugee law is required for India, which houses refugees from #Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Tibet and Myanmar, but does not officially recognise them as refugees. This puts them in a disadvantageous position; their lives became entirely dependent on the whims of local political competitions.

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