Deportation of 17 Bangladeshis postponed till Thursday
The deportation of 17 Bangladeshis from Assam, scheduled on Monday morning, has been postponed because officials in Bangladesh were under prepared to take them back. The exercise is likely to be carried out on Thursday.
The deportation comes six months after the central government introduced a bill to facilitate persecuted non-Muslims from neighbouring countries become Indian citizens. Three of the 17 deportees are Hindus, believed to have been hounded out of Bangladesh.
“The delay in deporting these people who illegally entered Assam over the past few years is because of reasons beyond our control. We hope to complete the formality on Thursday,” said Pradip Ranjan Kar, Superintendent of Police of Karimganj district.
The 17 were among 54 people from Bangladesh and Myanmar who were caught after illegally entering India during the past few years.
“The 17 people will be deported from Steamerghat at Karimganj town (bordering Bangladesh). Personnel of the Border Guards Bangladesh will be receiving them at Zakiganj (Bangladesh part of the border check post),” said A. Asthana, Deputy Inspector General (DIG), BSF.
Last year, on October 13, southern Assam officials had deported 10 Bangladeshis. This followed bilateral meetings between the two governments in 2015 – first in January at Silchar and then in October at Srimangal in Bangladesh’s Maulvibazar district.
The deportation comes amid a raging controversy in Assam over the BJP’s decision to grant citizenship to non-Muslim “refugees” from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan. Assam is particularly wary of becoming a haven for Hindu Bangladeshis if the BJP succeeds in amending the Citizenship Act.
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