BJP-ruled Manipur intensifies drive to prevent entry of Rohingya refugees


Imphal, May 25: The Manipur government has stepped up efforts to curb the flow of Rohingya refugees into the state following the arrest of eight illegal immigrants from the community in Imphal on May 21.
Chief minister N Biren Singh also instructed law-enforcement agencies to install check posts at border gates in places like Behiang, Moreh, Mao and Jiri to prevent refugees from entering. On Thursday, police sent back 45 immigrants – 38 from Mao and seven from Jiribam – and arrested three Myanmar nationals for travelling through the state with fake documents.
The Myanmar nationals were identified as Thant Zin Soe (32) and Aung Thi Ha (28) from Meiktila in Mandalay, besides Thant Zin Tun (29) from Myitkyina in Kachin. While Soe carried a fake Aadhaar card that identified him as Asaddullah of Kollam in Kerala, Tun had papers claiming that he was Mohammed Haroon of Moreh. Ha’s fake Aadhaar card identified him as Mohammed Ahmad, a resident of Faizabad in Uttar Pradesh.
“The three were arrested with fake Aadhaar cards that were allegedly prepared in Uttar Pradesh,” a police officer said on the condition of anonymity. “An FIR has been lodged at the Tengnoupal police station.”
The BJP-led government in Manipur has been cracking down on illegal immigration as well as gangs issuing fake Aadhaar cards ever since it came to power last year. “The government will continue its drive against Rohingya refugees in the state as it concerns the security of the state as well as the nation,” said Biren Singh. The chief minister has already promised to table a bill aimed at protecting indigenous people of Manipur in the state assembly.
With Thursday’s arrest, the total number of arrested Rohingyas since March 22, 2018, has gone up to two dozen. Rohingyas have been dubbed by the United Nations as the most persecuted ethnic minority in the world. (Agencies)