India has never taken up issue of illegal immigrants with Dhaka, said Advisor to Bangladesh PM
Speaking on the Eastern India conclave held by India today, the advisor t the Prime Minister Dr. Dr Gowher Rizvi said that most people in Bangladesh see this as internal Indian discussion of India.
He said India is yet to raise issue of illegal immigrants with Hasina government
“We need to make a distinction between Rohingya and illegal infiltrators,” Ram Madhav said, who was also in the conclave.
Bangladesh is willing to cooperate with India in its endeavour to send back “illegal immigrants” provided their identity is “determined” by the concerned authorities, Dr Gowher Rizvi, advisor to Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at the India Today Conclave East 2018 held in Kolkata on Friday.
During the conversation with News Director, TV Today Network, Rahul Kanwal, Dr Rizvi spoke at length on the issue of illegal immigrants and the growing voices in India to send them back.
Calling it an “internal problem” for now, the advisor said that given the procedure is not complete within India and once completed only then can New Delhi raise the matter with Dhaka.
“Most people in Bangladesh see this as an internal Indian discussion. There is a process in India which has started and at some point this process will come to a point when it will be on the table with Bangladesh,” Dr Rizvi said.
He confirmed that India is yet to raise the issue of illegal immigrants with the Hasina government.
“In my 10 years that I have been the prime minister’s advisor, this issue has never been raised by India with us. I respect it. It is an Indian discussion and Indians will debate and discuss what is right for them”, he said.
To a question on vitriolic comments made by the BJP leader calling Bangladeshis and Rohingya Muslims “insects” and demanding that they be “shot” and “eliminated”, Dr Rizvi said that Bangladesh is willing to take them back but the onus to prove citizenship through documents is on India, “If there are Bangladesh nationals, we will take them back. They are residents of India so the onus has to be on India to prove.”
Weighing into the conversation, BJP leader Ram Madhav concurred with the Bangladeshi guest that India is only on the first stage of the process of identifying those who entered India illegally.
“What Mr Rizvi is saying, in a way, is the procedure that has to be followed at the government level. You cannot push people into another country without that country accepting them. That is how it works. In fact, Bangladesh also is faced with the Rohingya problem which they themselves are trying to settle through a process. And then there are international agencies like United Nations Refugees Commission. The relationship with Bangladesh is paramount to us. Keeping that in mind we can definitely find a solution. There is a process that needs to be completed. Detect, Delete and the Deport. We are in the first stage”, he said.