NEW DELHI, Sept 15 - In a pre-emptive move, the State Government has directed Assam Police to push back any Rohingya refugees found trying to sneak into the State.
The order issued at the behest of the highest level in Dispur follows Intelligence inputs from Delhi that illegal Rohingya immigrants might try to sneak into the North East. The Rohingya refugee crisis was discussed at the North Block last week and the situation across all the States bordering Bangladesh and Myanmar was reviewed, said sources.
Following the meeting, an advisory that was issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs last month was followed by a general alert to the North Eastern States and border guarding forces to tighten vigil, added the sources.
When specific inputs reached Dispur, Assam Police was asked to tighten surveillance and not to take any chances and resort to pushing back the Rohingyas caught trying to cross the border. Manipur is the other State to have taken a similar initiative following the Centre�s input.
The Manipur Government has asked its police forces to push back any Rohingyas immigrants irrespective of their religion, the sources said.
When asked where Rohingyas would be pushed back to, the sources replied Bangladesh, from where they might try to sneak in. At least eight Rohingyas were nabbed in Assam recently, said the sources.
Meanwhile, reports said that Assam Police have sounded a high alert along the bordering areas with Bangladesh in the wake of the exodus of Rohingyas from Myanmar to Bangladesh.
�There has been no report of any exodus of Rohingyas from Bangladesh in the past two weeks, but we are on alert for such a kind of situation,
Additional Director General of Police (Special Branch) Pallav Bhattacharya was quoted as saying. �We�ve already alerted the district police of Karimganj, Cachar, Hailakandi, Dhubri and South Salmara regarding the Rohingya issue and discussed the matter with top officials of BSF and other security agencies,� ADGP Bhattacharya told newsmen.
According to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, nearly 300,000 Rohingya refugees have entered Bangladesh since the latest military crackdown, which began in Rakhine two weeks ago following a series of attacks on law enforcement agencies by insurgents.
Meanwhile, MHA sources said they have ordered tightening of the borders of Northeastern States with Myanmar and Bangladesh to prevent the Rohingyas fleeing the Rakhine state from entering India.
At least four states � Arunachal Pradesh (520 km), Manipur (398 km), Nagaland (215 km) and Mizoram (510 km) � share a 1,643-km mountainous and unfenced border with Myanmar. There is a 16-km wide free zone (8 km on either side of the frontier) along this 1,643-km unfenced border.
�Eight additional companies of Assam Rifles are being relocated to the India-Myanmar border to strengthen security along the frontiers,� the sources said, adding there has been no influx of Rohingyas to Mizoram yet. In view of the apprehension of influx, a high-level meeting of various security officials was held at 23 Assam Rifles HQ in Aizawl yesterday.