Two Myanmarese nationals held in Tripura


Agartala : Two Myanmarese nationals were arrested in Tripura after they sneaked into the northeastern state from Bangladesh, police said here Monday.

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Acting on a tip-off, the Tripura police apprehended the Myanmarese men – Mohammad Tayub, 29, and Saho Alam, 20 – from a hotel in Agartala late Sunday night.

“The foreign nationals illegally crossed over to western Tripura from Bangladesh and attempted to leave for Guwahati (in Assam) by train,” Deputy Superintendent of Police (Central) Harimohan Das told IANS.

Police Monday produced the two infiltrators in a local court, which sent them to 14 days jail.

“We are interrogating the foreign nationals and shall decide after two weeks about whether to push them back into Bangladesh or not,” Das said.

Another police official told reporters: “The Myanmarese nationals recently fled from the refugee camps at Teknaf region in Cox’s Bazar district (in Chittagong) in southeast Bangladesh. They entered the Indian territory through Sonamura border in western Tripura.”

“During preliminary questioning, Tayub and Alam told the police that they tried to go to Assam to find jobs. Some of their community members earlier went to Assam and other places in India in search of jobs,” the police official said.

“The minority Rohingya Muslims have been fleeing their country to evade atrocities by the members of the rival community in Myanmar where they are being denied even the most basic rights and needs,” Tayub, one of the men, told the police.

“We are not allowed to travel from one village to another within our country without permission from the army and we are not even allowed to marry without the permission of the authorities,” a visibly traumatised Tayub added.

Earlier, in April, five members of a Myanmarese family, including four women, were arrested in Tripura capital Agartala after they sneaked into the state from Bangladesh.

They too had fled from the refugee camps at Teknaf region of Cox’s Bazar before entering India to go to Saharanpur in Uttar Pradesh via Guwahati to find jobs.

Since mid-1990s, over 225,000 Myanmar nationals have been sheltering in the Cox’s Bazar district of Bangladesh. They are believed to have taken shelter in Bangladesh to escape religious oppression by the Myanmarese government.

India’s four northeastern states of Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh together share a 1,643-km unfenced border with Myanmar.