Women and children living in the Rohingya refugee camp of Jammu feel unsure about their fate. More than 200 from this camp located in Jammu city of Jammu and Kashmir, were detained by the local police in the month of March this year. A police statement identified them as ‘illegal immigrants.’ After this police action, they held a protest in Delhi, asking UNHCR to protect them. However, the whole exercised has not brought any relief to this persecuted minority of Myanmar after facing attacks at the hands of the government forces. It is pertinent to mention here that, the government of Myanmar revoked the citizenship rights of the Rohingya in 1982.
According to a VOA report, stateless Rohingyas from Myanmar have no way to travel to any country legally, and their status as refugees is not always recognized, as is the case in India. India did not sign the 1951 U.N. Refugee Convention and thus treats all Rohingya entering the country as illegal immigrants. There are a few hundred Rohingya currently jailed in India. In the past three years, India deported about 100 Rohingya refugees to Myanmar. The families in this camp feel unsafe for their future as most of the male members of the community remain detained in Hira Nagar jail of Jammu. The children and women remain the most vulnerable groups of this arrest spree started by the government of India and can be subjected to exploitation, abuse, and other means of ill-treatment.