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As J&K Cracks Down on Rohingyas, Their Children Have Nowhere to Go

Muneeb Ul Islam
·5 min read

Indian authorities started a crackdown on Rohingyas refugees in the Jammu region on Saturday, 6 March. Having nowhere to go, family members of the detainees feel suppressed.

A young refugee woman narrates the traumatic ordeal she went through during the course of migration from Myanmar to India.
A young refugee woman narrates the traumatic ordeal she went through during the course of migration from Myanmar to India.

Rohingyas are a displaced community which moved from the Myanmar region to Jammu and Kashmir. However, the community has still not got any relief from persecution, and continues to face the administration’s wrath.

A Rohingya women, holding her child, leaves a Rohingya refugee camp.
A Rohingya women, holding her child, leaves a Rohingya refugee camp.

In early March, hundreds of Rohingyas were rounded up by the J&K Police as part of a “verification”, leaving behind their children with no support system to lean on and to fend for themselves.

Also Read: Deport Rohingyas as They’re ‘Most Vulnerable’ to COVID-19: J&K BJP

Nine-year-old Saby Kanoor has had a very difficult childhood, ever since her family’s displacement from Myanmar. However, Jammu and Kashmir provided them refuge, which is a beacon of hope for such displaced Rohingyas.

Saby Kanoor preparing food for her younger brothers at a refugee camp.
Saby Kanoor preparing food for her younger brothers at a refugee camp.

Since the police have detained Kanoor’s parents, she has been working hard at the forefront for his brothers and sisters. Her parents have been placed at a detention centre in Hiranagar Jail.

The incident has stirred a controversy, leaving children of the detained refugees frightened due to the oppressive measures taken by the J&K administration.

"“I have nowhere to go, no source of income, and now, the J&K administration has taken my family members, leaving my little brothers and sisters behind. I don’t know how to cook, we have no source of income and it’s become impossible to eat twice a day.”" - Saby Kanoor to The Quint

Rohingyas have been a displaced community which moved from the Myanmar region to Jammu and Kashmir.
Rohingyas have been a displaced community which moved from the Myanmar region to Jammu and Kashmir.

Jaffar Alam and his wife Diljohar have also been detained by the administration. Their family is in shambles, with their children being unable to find food to eat.

Alam’s children have requested the authorities to release their parents as they have no source of income, and they may die of hunger if their parents aren’t released on time.

Jaffar's younger son is afraid that the administration may round him up too, instead of releasing his parents.

Rohingya refugees at a makeshift camp.
Rohingya refugees at a makeshift camp.

Jaffar's six-year-old child is looking for his parents. He wails whenever someone mentions his mother or father.

In early March, hundreds of Rohingyas were detained, leaving behind their children who have nowhere to go.
In early March, hundreds of Rohingyas were detained, leaving behind their children who have nowhere to go.

Also Read: Amid Coronavirus, Delhi’s Rohingya Refugees Struggle to Survive

“We think we may be moved from here and we don’t know where to go. It’s unfortunate that this world is closing doors for us. We have been terrified ever since we moved from Myanmar. The state had provided us refugee camps and now by this step, this world has come to an end for us[sic.],” said Sufiyra, one of the Rohingyas who is also a victim of the repressive policies.

Ever since the crackdown of Indian authorities on Rohingyas in the Jammu region, family members of detainees have been feeling suppressed, with nowhere to go.
Ever since the crackdown of Indian authorities on Rohingyas in the Jammu region, family members of detainees have been feeling suppressed, with nowhere to go.

Ilyaas Ahmad, another refugee from Myanmar, told The Quint that they have been cooperating with the investigative agencies.

“When they used to come here for verification, we were always cooperative but now it seems the state is closing the doors.[sic.] We are facing such repressive steps from the administration,” said Ahmad.

In early March, hundreds of Rohingyas were detained, leaving behind their children who have nowhere to go.
In early March, hundreds of Rohingyas were detained, leaving behind their children who have nowhere to go.
Rohingya refugees at a makeshift camp.
Rohingya refugees at a makeshift camp.

Rohingyas are a displaced community forced to move from Myanmar as its people feared for their lives.

Rohingyas are a displaced community which moved from Myanmar to Jammu and Kashmir.
Rohingyas are a displaced community which moved from Myanmar to Jammu and Kashmir.

They migrated with a hope that other countries will host them. However, with such repressive measures by the J&K administration, including the detentions of Rohingyas, the whole community is perplexed.

Rohingyas are a displaced community which moved from Myanmar to Jammu and Kashmir.
Rohingyas are a displaced community which moved from Myanmar to Jammu and Kashmir.

Also Read: New Delhi at Sea Over Rohingya Crisis: Will Dhaka Come Around?

Mohd Rafiq, who had migrated to India in 2012, has always renewed the migration card on time.

But the news of India planning to send back Rohingyas to Myanmar came as a huge shock to him. He was disdained to hear about administration's policy.

Rohingyas are a displaced community which moved from Myanmar to Jammu and Kashmir.
Rohingyas are a displaced community which moved from Myanmar to Jammu and Kashmir.
Ever since the crackdown of Indian authorities on Rohingyas in the Jammu region, family members of detainees have been feeling suppressed, with nowhere to go.
Ever since the crackdown of Indian authorities on Rohingyas in the Jammu region, family members of detainees have been feeling suppressed, with nowhere to go.

"“I don’t want to return, as we never felt secure in that country. We left everything when we migrated. Now suddenly, the mood shift in India’s administration may prove harmful for us. I don’t know whether I will live or not, but going back will risk my life.”" - Mohd Rafiq to The Quint

Rohingya refugees at a makeshift camp.
Rohingya refugees at a makeshift camp.

Also Read: Persecution, Living Conditions Push Rohingya To Seek Better Refuge

. Read more on Photos by The Quint.Madhya Pradesh Assembly Passes Anti-Conversion Bill by Voice VoteAs J&K Cracks Down on Rohingyas, Their Children Have Nowhere to Go . Read more on Photos by The Quint.