The Myanmar military personnel denied entry to a 14-year-old Rohingya girl considering the ongoing turmoil in the country on Thursday, April 1, when the Indian authorities took her to the India-Myanmar border for deportation.
In 2019 the Cachar police had found the girl in an unconscious condition at Rongpur area near Silchar, Assam. They handed her to Ujjala Shelter Home for Girls. Later, she was sent to a non-government organisation, Nivedita Nari Sanstha. On Thursday, she was accompanied to the border by eight members of Assam Police but was denied entry by the immigration department of Myanmar. The Myanmar authorities refused to open the gate of the international border in view of the military coup that has been going on in the country. They said that the current situation was not appropriate for any deportation, as reported by the Hindustan Times.
Myanmar has been witnessing protests since the military took over the democratically elected government on February 1, 2021. Several civilians and even families of police personnel have fled to other countries to escape from the bloodshed. Amid the current crisis, the decision of the Indian government to deport the 14-year-old was criticised by the United Nations as they urged the authorities to halt the process. According to Reuters, a United Nations Human Rights Commission spokesperson said, "The situation in Myanmar is not yet conducive for voluntary return in a safe, secure and sustainable manner, and returning the child to Myanmar may place her at immediate risk of serious harm."
According to another report by the Assam Tribune on March 31, the girl had requested the Indian authorities to send her to Cox's Bazar in Bangladesh instead of Myanmar as her parents were reportedly living in the Cox's Bazar refugee camp. Diba Roy, the founder of Nivedita Nari Sangshta, said that she had clearly conveyed the request of the girl to the local authorities, but little heed was paid to the matter, and she was sent to Myanmar nonetheless.
Had the 14-year-old been successfully deported to Myanmar, she would have been the first Rohingya to be sent to Myanmar after the political crisis started. Even though the Rohingya population has been living in India for years, they are still considered to be a threat to national security by the Indian government.