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Calcutta High Court stays deportation of ‘state-less’ Rohingya couple

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The Calcutta High Court has stayed the deportation of a Rohingya couple on humanitarian grounds, till the pendency of their writ petition challenging the state’s attempt to deport them to Myanmar which has disowned the Rohingya community.

Justice Sabyasachi Bhattacharya of the Calcutta High Court has pointed out that ‘minimum protection ought to be given to the petitioners’ in view of the Fundamental Rights enshrined in the Constitution of India as well as the UN Charter and the norms of any civilized society. The petitioners had submitted that ‘such deportation would tantamount to a death sentence’ as Myanmar has ‘the declared policy of an all-out onslaught on the “Rohingya” Community.’

The counsel appearing for the state government asked on behalf of the Ministry of External Affairs and the Union of India who are a necessary party and hence must be heard in the matter.

The court has directed the respondents to file affidavit(s)-in-opposition within January 10, 2020, and any reply to the same, from the petitioners by January 17, 2020.

The court posted the matter “for hearing” on January 20, 2020.

Meanwhile, a batch of petitions is pending before the Supreme Court seeking, inter alia, stay on deportation of Rohingya Muslims and, housing and educational facilities from the central government for them at par with the Sri Lankan Tamil Refugees.

While a three-judge bench of the Supreme Court has sought a comprehensive status report on the status of living conditions in the Rohingya refugee camps, it refused to grant a categorical stay on the deportation of the supposed immigrants as that could have international ramifications. The petitions are next likely to come up before the apex court next month.

— India Legal Bureau

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