Stateless People

  • Tasneem Kabir
  • Publish Date: Mar 5 2018 2:23AM
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  • Updated Date: Mar 5 2018 2:23AM
Stateless People

The one issue that has gripped the attention of the world is the plight of the Rohingya. Here’s what Wikipedia has to say about this distraught populace: The Rohingya people are a stateless Indo-Aryan-speaking people from Rakhine State, Myanmar. Towards a distraught people that the internet’s most consulted website has declared ‘stateless’, our Government sure does know how to portray just how exceptionally compassionate and empathetic it is. I mean it, in all sarcasm.

Moreover, one simply does not accuse the government, without supporting evidence. The Government of India is said to have told the Supreme Court that it doesn’t want the country to become the refugee capital of the world. “People from every other country will flood  our country,” the government has said. 

One really doesn’t know what to make of such statements. Is one to laugh at the sheer ridiculousness of it all or to cry out loud for all the lullabies of anguish the Rohingya sleep to every night, not sure if the dawn of the following day would bring some shelter.

Moving on, to absolve myself of the blasphemous blame of quoting out of context, allow me to define the context under which the above quoted statement was asserted. The Government was responding to a submission made by Rohingya refugees that the Border Security Force (BSF) was pushing them back  at the borders with chilli spray and stun grenades. May I, and countless others, beg pardon for expecting something of minimum humanitarian morality. It sure wouldn’t require being an Einstein figure to allow this fact to penetrate the human skull that returning to a country where one is being persecuted is as good an option as self-immolation.

To explain it further, I can’t resist mentioning this little anecdote: This January, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had a rendezvous with Ma’am Aung San Suu Ky. The issues discussed were bilateral and regional ties and defence. Was the issue of relocating the ailing and displaced Rohingya touched, even if tangentially? I hope you’re laughing as mirthlessly as I am right now. The United Nations had remarked, in September 2017, that the Rohingya situation of the Rakhine State could turn into a humanitarian catastrophe. How many more homeless children need to die of starvation and how many more Rohingya youths must go in vain till it sinks in that the remark made by the United Nations is now a reality? To each and every distraught Rohingya, their cries echo in all the four directions, but there is no response from anywhere.  They cling on to a frail hope for dear life.