UP police asked to identify all illegal immigrants
01 October 2019
The police in Uttar Pradesh have been asked to identify all illegal settlers in the state, including Bangladeshis and "other foreigners," so that they can be deported, saying it is “very important” for the state's internal security.
In a circular issued to all district police chiefs, the state Director General of Police has said those found to have illegally entered the country will be deported in a "time-bound” manner “monitored by senior officials."
The UP government’s move comes in the midst of a controversy over the revised citizen's list in BJP-ruled Assam, the NRC or the National Register of Citizens, which leaves out 1.9 million people who stand to lose their citizenship.
"It has nothing to do with NRC. It's a normal policing exercise intended to strengthen our security mechanisms," UP police chief OP Singh told NDTV, adding that "We have been doing similar exercises".
Police have been ordered to comb transport hubs and slum clusters on the outskirts of their districts and verify all documents produced by anyone appearing suspicious. Police have also been asked to track down government employees who may have helped prepare fake documents for "foreigners".
Construction companies, which provide jobs to such illegal immigrants brought by labour contractors, have been asked to that fingerprints of people identified as Bangladeshis or other foreigners. These companies will be responsible for keeping identity proof of all labourers.
"We intend to identify such people. Order is very clear... we need to be transparent. Videography has to be done and no one has to be troubled," Singh said.
Chief minister Yogi Adityanath had earlier proposed to launch a similar exercise like the Assam NRC in the state if needed, stating also that the Assam exercise was important for "national security".
The Supreme Court-monitored citizen's list exercise in Assam was, however, vastly different as it is aimed at determining who was born in Assam and who came from Bangladesh or other neighboring regions and gives a cut-off date. Those who can prove they were residents of Assam up to midnight on 24 March 1971 -- a day before Bangladesh declared its independence from Pakistan - are considered citizens by the NRC.