Myanmar refugees will not be sent back, Amit Shah assures Mizoram CM

Aizawl, Jan 5 (UNI) Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Thursday assured Mizoram Chief Minister Lalduhoma that Myanmar refugees who are sheltering in the state will not be sent back until and unless peace is restored in the neighbouring country.

Shah said this when Lalduhoma called on him at the latter’s office in Delhi Friday afternoon.

The Home Minister expressed the centre’s intention before the CM of not to send back the 31,873 refugees from Myanmar taking refuge in Mizoram.

“I want the people of Mizoram to know that the refugees will not be deported unless and until peace is restored in Myanmar,” Shah told Lalduhoma.

Shah also informed Lalduhoma that the policy of the present government at the centre is to take and record fingerprints of all the foreigners living in the country.

It may be noted that the previous Mizo National Front (MNF) government turned down Delhi’s direction to collect biographic and biometric data from the Myanmar refugees last year.

The two leaders discussed about the Mizoram Registration of Household bill, passed by the state legislature in 2019, which is yet to be given assent by the President of India.

Shah asked Lalduhoma to make some amendments in the bill before it is submitted again.

Lalduhoma later met Union Home Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla and informed him about the Union Home Minister’s assurances not to deport Myanmar refugees from Mizoram.

The MNF government in early 2021 had rejected the directions of the centre to push back refugees from Myanmar who fled their country following the military coup d’êtat on February 1 which triggered brutal military crackdown on pro-democratic demonstrators who launched civil disobedience movement.

The state government continued to let the tens of thousands of Myanmar refugees taking refuge with the government, civil societies, churches and individuals by continuing to provide humanitarian assistance to them.

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