SC puts on hold Centre's plan to deport Rohingyas

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It said the Rohingya Muslims issue is of great magnitude and the state has a big role to play.

The court stated observed that it can not be oblivious to the plight of innocent children and women but also asserted that there needs to be a balance between human rights and national security. While posting the matter for further hearing on November 21, the court categorically stated that no Rohingyas refugee should be deported until the next date of hearing in the case.

The top court had earlier heard the centre insist that the court must not entertain the petition from two Rohingya Muslims against sending them back and called the 40,000-odd "Rohingya immigrants" in India as a threat to national security.

The government had told the parliament on 9 August that according to available data, more than 14,000 Rohingya, registered with the UNHCR, were staying in India.

The Court also orders that no Rohingyas will be deported until it will deliver its verdict on the matter.

"India's stated policy position in global fora and as mentioned throughout in policy statements and notifications, has been to recognise the distinction between refugees who are forced out for their countries due to persecution and illegal migrants who come in search of economic prospects", he said.

Appearing for the petitioners, Fali Nariman contended that the Rohingyas were entitled to the Fundamental Right to Life and Liberty under Article 21 of the Constitution as these rights are applicable equally to citizens and non-citizens of India.

The UN's human rights chief has criticised India's decision as lacking "basic human compassion". "However, this should not be used an excuse to mete out collective punishment to an entire community", it says, adding that India must "exert its diplomatic clout to pressurise the Government of Myanmar to end the security crackdown in Rakhine".

'We have to strike a balance. "This is simply not the case and the evidence to support these assertions have not held up", read the letter. The Central government is describing Rohingyas as illegal immigrants and refusing to treat them as refugees.

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