India’s home minister pledges aid to Rohingya refugees after meeting with Bangladesh PM

Following a three-day visit to Dhaka and an official meeting with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, India’s Home Minister, Rajnath Singh, has pledged further relief materials to over 750,000 Rohingya refugees living in Cox’s Bazar region in Bangladesh.  

The meeting between the two officials focused on India’s commitment to re-building homes in Rakhine province in Myanmar, ensuring Rohingya refugees from Bangladesh are properly resettled post-repatriation.  

Singh also committed to improving housing conditions in the camps for the internally displaced Rohingya. The minister believes that meeting the needs of the refugees reduces their chances of seeking asylum in India.

While the aid of Bangladesh to deal with Rohingya influx has a humanitarian angle, India is also working the diplomatic channels with Myanmar to ensure it takes back the Rohingya. Once the deportation plan is amicably worked out with Myanmar, the Rohingya can be resettled in Rakhine, with the prefabricated houses being constructed as part of an Indian project offering them proper living conditions Singh said.

The joint development project between India and Bangladesh aims to improve the current situation for the displaced Rohingya refugees and speed up their return to Myanmar.

Xchange’s recent Repatriation Survey (2018) indicated that many Rohingya refugees in camps across Cox’s Bazar, had apprehensions about the repatriation process and returning to Myanmar.  The survey reported that 97.5% of respondents would consider returning Myanmar, whereas 99% respondents said they would only return if certain guarantees were met.  

Citizenship, religious accommodation, freedom of movement and recognition of rights by the Myanmar government were among them.

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[India to step up assistance to Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh and aid in their repatriation; Tehran Times ]

[Rajnath offers more aid to Dhaka for Rohingya, Times of India]