Published: 24th March 2021
Mizo Students' Association holds candlelight protest in Delhi to express solidarity with Myanmar coup victims
The Ministry of Home Affairs had asked four northeastern states - Mizoram, Nagaland, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh to take appropriate action to prevent an influx of people from Myanmar
The Mizo Students' Association on Tuesday held a candlelight protest to show solidarity with the people killed in the grim violence in Myanmar following the February 1 coup. The event was organised to support the democratic movement in Myanmar that is fighting the hostile overthrow of the democratically-elected government by the junta, informed Mizoram lawmaker K Vanlalvena.
On February 1, Myanmar's military overthrew the government and declared a year-long state of emergency hours before the newly-elected parliament was due to convene, leading to massive protests across the country. C Lalremruata, a member of the North East Students' Organisation (NESO) Council, said according to reports, a single village near the Myanmar border is housing around 350 people.
Talking on the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) directive to prevent an influx of people from Myanmar into India, he said: "Not only the government of Mizoram, but all the people of Mizoram do not want to send the refugees back to Myanmar because all of them are our brothers. Sending them back means killing them, because whenever we send them back, police officers or Army may shoot them dead. That is why from the point of humanity, we cannot send them back." Lalremruata also said that the Indian government in the past had granted citizenship to people coming from Pakistan and Bangladesh. "Why not from Myanmar? Why should we not allow them to enter, they are not demanding to be a citizen, but let them live here for a while. Let them stay peacefully until peace and normalcy are established in Myanmar. After democracy is established in Myanmar, let them leave," he said.
The Ministry of Home Affairs earlier this month had asked four northeastern states - Mizoram, Nagaland, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh - asking them to take appropriate action as per law to prevent a possible influx of people from Myanmar into India. The Centre had written a letter to the states asking them to take appropriate action as per law to check illegal influx from Myanmar into India. The Home Ministry reiterated that state governments and Union Territory (UT) administrations have no power to grant "refugee" status to any foreigner as India is not a signatory to the UN Refugee Convention of 1951 and its 1967 Protocol. Meanwhile, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP), over 250 people have died during the clashes with police and military forces since the coup.