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UP claims Pilibhit houses majority of the 32,000 ‘identified’ refugees

It has submitted a report made by an NGO which has identified refugees from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan

Sabrangindia 14 Jan 2020
refugees
Image Courtesy: AFP


After becoming the first state to start implementing the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), even before the effective date of CAA was notified, Uttar Pradesh has gone a step further. Within a week, the state has identified 32,000 refugees who are staying in 21 districts in UP. It is pertinent to note that it has been only 3 days since CAA has become effective in India.

A 116-page report titled “Uttar Pradesh Mein Aaye Pakistan, Afghanistan Evam Bangladesh ke Sharnarthiyon ki Aapbeeti“ (The condition of refugees from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh in Uttar Pradesh) has been prepared by an NGO called Nagrik Adhikar Manch. Shrikant Sharma, a BJP Minister in Yogi Adityanath’s government has said that all District Magistrates in Uttar Pradesh had been instructed to collect data on such refugees. He also said that the identification process is a continuous one.

This report has been submitted to the Central Home Department and PTI quoted a senior Home Department official saying, “We have got the report of the Nagrik Adhikar Manch.” They have identified that refugees have been staying in districts like Sahranpur, Gorakhpur, Aligarh, Rampur, Pratapgarh, Pilibhit, Lucknow, Varanasi, Bahraich, Lakhimpur, Rampur, Meerut, and Agra districts. The report claims that Pilibhit district houses majority of these refugees.

Census data on migrants

Recently, migration data has been released by Office of the Registrar General & Census Commissioner, India. A brief analysis of this data indicates that while data on foreign migrants do not distinguish between a legal migrant and an illegal migrant, but such data is important indicator of the volume and pattern of overall international migration.

 If we compare foreign migrants who arrived in India during the two succeeding decades (1991-2001 and 2001-2011) then we find number of Bangladeshi migrants’ flow to India has declined from 2.79 lakhs during 1991-2001 to 1.72 lakhs during 2001-2011. Which means there is 50% decline in migrants’ flow to India from Bangladesh between the last two decades. Accordingly, there is sharp decline (25%) in the total number of Bangladeshi migrants in India, from 30.84 lakhs in 2001 to 23.04 lakhs in 2011. The proportion of Bangladeshi migrants in 2001 was about 60% of total international migrants in India, which has sharply reduced to 42% in 2011.

Similarly, number of Pakistani migrants has also declined from 9.97 lakhs in 2001 to 7.07 lakhs, that is a decline of about 29%.

If the official census data is to be believed, the influx of refugees from Pakistan as well as Bangladesh has considerably reduced until 2011. This data point, even if it does not discredit the number of refugees being claimed by UP, it raises questions on the claims being made by many in the BJP leadership that there are crores of Bangladeshi migrants in India. And if the number claimed by UP are to be believed it could also mean that a relatively fewer number of refugees remain to be identified from the rest of India, going by census data.

Related:

UP claims Pilibhit houses majority of the 32,000 ‘identified’ refugees

It has submitted a report made by an NGO which has identified refugees from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan

refugees
Image Courtesy: AFP


After becoming the first state to start implementing the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), even before the effective date of CAA was notified, Uttar Pradesh has gone a step further. Within a week, the state has identified 32,000 refugees who are staying in 21 districts in UP. It is pertinent to note that it has been only 3 days since CAA has become effective in India.

A 116-page report titled “Uttar Pradesh Mein Aaye Pakistan, Afghanistan Evam Bangladesh ke Sharnarthiyon ki Aapbeeti“ (The condition of refugees from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh in Uttar Pradesh) has been prepared by an NGO called Nagrik Adhikar Manch. Shrikant Sharma, a BJP Minister in Yogi Adityanath’s government has said that all District Magistrates in Uttar Pradesh had been instructed to collect data on such refugees. He also said that the identification process is a continuous one.

This report has been submitted to the Central Home Department and PTI quoted a senior Home Department official saying, “We have got the report of the Nagrik Adhikar Manch.” They have identified that refugees have been staying in districts like Sahranpur, Gorakhpur, Aligarh, Rampur, Pratapgarh, Pilibhit, Lucknow, Varanasi, Bahraich, Lakhimpur, Rampur, Meerut, and Agra districts. The report claims that Pilibhit district houses majority of these refugees.

Census data on migrants

Recently, migration data has been released by Office of the Registrar General & Census Commissioner, India. A brief analysis of this data indicates that while data on foreign migrants do not distinguish between a legal migrant and an illegal migrant, but such data is important indicator of the volume and pattern of overall international migration.

 If we compare foreign migrants who arrived in India during the two succeeding decades (1991-2001 and 2001-2011) then we find number of Bangladeshi migrants’ flow to India has declined from 2.79 lakhs during 1991-2001 to 1.72 lakhs during 2001-2011. Which means there is 50% decline in migrants’ flow to India from Bangladesh between the last two decades. Accordingly, there is sharp decline (25%) in the total number of Bangladeshi migrants in India, from 30.84 lakhs in 2001 to 23.04 lakhs in 2011. The proportion of Bangladeshi migrants in 2001 was about 60% of total international migrants in India, which has sharply reduced to 42% in 2011.

Similarly, number of Pakistani migrants has also declined from 9.97 lakhs in 2001 to 7.07 lakhs, that is a decline of about 29%.

If the official census data is to be believed, the influx of refugees from Pakistan as well as Bangladesh has considerably reduced until 2011. This data point, even if it does not discredit the number of refugees being claimed by UP, it raises questions on the claims being made by many in the BJP leadership that there are crores of Bangladeshi migrants in India. And if the number claimed by UP are to be believed it could also mean that a relatively fewer number of refugees remain to be identified from the rest of India, going by census data.

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