Refugees on Intel radar after recovery of fake identity documents
Dealing with armed insurgency for the past 28 years, the state is now faced with new security concerns emerging from the illegal settlement of Rohingya Muslim refugees in Jammu, forcing the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) to think of their deportation to their country.
The issue snowballed into a major controversy when some refugees managed to acquire important documents such as Aadhaar cards, ration cards, fake permanent residence certificates and election identity proof through fraudulent means with the help of officials of the district administration.
The refugees are also getting birth certificates, facilitating the admission of their children to government-run schools in the state.
The Home Ministry was made aware of the development by intelligence agencies recently. On several occasions earlier, intelligence agencies have received input about refugees being vulnerable and at risk of falling into the hands of anti-national elements.
“The CID and other intelligence agencies have warned the MHA about the designs of the illegal settlement of Rohingya refugees in the state. As they are dependent on aid and relief from the government and NGOs and don’t have any means of livelihood, they could become a tool in the hands of anti-national elements which will prove disastrous for the security of the state,” said an intelligence source.
The fears were compounded when important identity documents were recovered by the Jammu district administration from the possession of a few Rohingya families. Following the recovery, an inquiry committee was constituted to probe the matter. The panel report is awaited.
Insiders in the district administration told Kashmir Post that Aadhaar cards, ration cards, fake permanent resident certificates and election identity proofs were recovered by officials from some refugees.
“This is a dangerous trend and the pattern was unearthed on time. Officials of the district administration were involved in the issuance of the documents to Rohingya refugees and it is being probed,” said a source in the district administration.
The stay of the Rohingyas has been facilitated by the state administration by allowing them to construct hutments with barbed wire fencing around the area.
The Rohingyas from Myanmar took refuge in India after facing threat to life from the Buddhist government in their own country.
After entering India, the refugees covered hundreds of miles and took shelter in Jammu. The state government has said the Rohingya refugees were not brought here under a well-thought-out plan.
During the Budget session, Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti had said in reply to a question in the Legislative Assembly that the “Rohingya refugees have entered the state on their own and nobody guided them to travel thousands of miles to reach Jammu. None of them is involved in any militancy-related activity, but 17 FIRs stand registered against 38 Rohingyas for various offences, including illegal border crossing. However, strict surveillance is being kept on the activities of the foreigners and the organisations helping them.”
The Jammu district administration recently recovered important identity documents from the possession of a few Rohingya families. The issue has snowballed into a major controversy
The Home Ministry, as per sources, is working out a plan to deport them to Myanmar after they received a negative report from intelligence agencies about the refugees
Reside near Muslim areas
Currently, 5,743 Rohingya refugees reside in Jammu and Kashmir. Of them, 4,999 refugees are settled in Jammu district while the rest live in Samba district
In Jammu district, the refugees live in camps at 26 places. They have preferred to stay near the Muslim-majority areas such as Bathindi, Sunjwan, Bahu Fort and Narwal in Jammu city. A few of them also reside in the Domana, Channi Himmat, Bus Stand and Dogra Hall areas