At least two lakh Rohingya people went abroad with Bangladeshi passport, the Minister for Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment of Bangladesh told Dhaka based Daily Star.
“They are earning there and sending money to Myanmar,” Nurul Islam said while addressing a programme organised by Centre for NRB (Non-Resident Bangladeshi) at a hotel in Dhaka.
“When we go to different countries, many people identifying themselves Rohingyas come to visit us. When inquired, they say they are Rohingyas,” the minister said.
In India, Senior government officials in September, 2017, had said that all of an estimated 40,000 Rohingya Muslims living in India are illegal immigrants, even those registered with the UN refugee agency, and the government aims to deport them.
Junior interior minister Kiren Rijiju had told the parliament that the central government had directed state authorities to identify and deport illegal immigrants including Rohingya, who face persecution in Buddhist-majority Burma.
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has issued identity cards to about 16,500 Rohingya in India that it says help them “prevent harassment, arbitrary arrests, detention and deportation”.
But Mr Rijiju, a high-profile minister in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist government, said in an interview that the UNHCR registration was irrelevant.
“They are doing it, we can’t stop them from registering. But we are not signatory to the accord on refugees,” he said.
“As far as we are concerned they are all illegal immigrants. They have no basis to live here. Anybody who is an illegal migrant will be deported.”