Unbridled influx of immigrants and a fluid Bangladesh border has exacerbated votebank politics by parties who have perversed secularism beyond recognition and made it a bad word
It is time to drop the political correctness and niceties and tell those arriving and settling in India illegally: Quit India. Now.
After Assam, entire India should have a National Registry of Citizens that achieves the four Ds — detects illegals, disenfranchises and deports them, and clearly demarcates the borders.
India has nothing against our two dear friends, Bangladesh and Myanmar. We want their best talent to come here, engage, enrich us and themselves, and even earn a citizenship if they want by officially applying.
But the illegal flow of Bangladeshis and Rohingyas must stop. If only for that selfish end, it is in India’s utmost interest that Bangladesh prospers and Myanmar achieves peace.
But till then, we must take hard steps. We must start a second Quit India Movement to flush out the illegals and kill any incentive to sneak into and settle in India. Here is why
Massive pressure on resources
There are already two crore illegal Bangladeshi immigrants in India, according to a 2016 Central government estimation presented to the Rajya Sabha. This is more than the population of Delhi.
To that, add the officially listed 40,000 illegal Rohingya immigrants from Myanmar. Unofficial estimates are much higher.
For a nation whose per capita income is still just $2,000 (Rs 1,37,000 a year) despite being one of the fastest growing economies in the world at over 7%, we can’t afford jobs and livelihood of our poor to be snatched away by outsiders. Or our stretched public distribution system to be abused by holders of fake ration cards and other documents.
Palpable security threat
On Wednesday night, the Jammu police caught three Rohingyas in possession of Rs 30 lakh. How did the so-called dispossessed and persecuted illegal immigrants get so much cash? What were they to do with that money?
Indian agencies have repeatedly warned about radicalisation and recruitment of Rohingyas by Al Qaeda and Hafiz Saeed’s Lashkar-e-Toiba. Terror groups like Harkat-ul-Jihad Islami-Arakan and Aqa Mul Mujahideen are already active locally in Myanmar and spreading.
Jamaat-ul Mujahideen Bangladesh is active along the eastern border of India with dense immigrant population and also in Kerala along the southwest coast.
Recent reports say Samiun Rahman, a British-Rohingya terrorist who had fought in Syria for Al Qaeda, was caught entering Mizoram in India via Chittagong in Bangladesh to mobilise Rohingyas settled here for jihad.
Is India legally or ethically bound to host and groom its own present and future enemies?
Creeping demographic change
While Pakistan and later-to-be Bangladesh separated from India as ‘home’ to Muslims but India chose to be secular, it doesn’t mean we allow wanton takeover of demography and marginalising of Hindus. Bengal’s Muslim population is up from 12% during Partition to 27% today. Assam has undergone a similar demographic skewing till it rose in rebellion for a National Registry of Citizens (NRC) which is now being implemented. I have argued here that the entire nation needs NRC to stop the demographic takeover.
Cold cultural takeover
Wherever there has been a sharp demographic shift, the local culture has undergone cataclysmic change, usurped, replaced by a completely illiberal, tyrannical and bigoted worldview.
In Bengal’s Murshidabad district which officially has 64% Muslim population because of Bangladeshi-boosted demographic change, a decree was suddenly issued a few years ago that girls should not play football in shorts. In fact, they should not play at all.
The age-old custom of Durga Puja in mohallas and Saraswati Puja in schools was stopped on objection of a handful of people from the minorities.
Cow smuggling and rural havoc
While the Left and so-called liberal intelligentsia cry hoarse about condemnable cow vigilante attacks, they keep quiet about killings by the cow smuggling mafia across India. Illegal immigrants run many of these cartels, and almost the entire cattle crossover happens at the Bangladesh border.
For a poor Indian villager, cattle and poultry are his last insurance against a bad crop. When his cow is stolen, it is hunger not religion that he thinks of, and pays vigilante groups to stop it.
The anti-Modi narrative manufacturers will never tell you that the highest share of cow vigilante deaths in 2017 were reportedly in Mamata Banerjee’s Bengal — five out of the nine deaths nationwide.
Another reason we need friendly relations with Bangladesh but a totally unfriendly border.
Crippling votebank politics
Unbridled influx of immigrants and a fluid Bangladesh border has exacerbated votebank politics by parties who have perversed secularism beyond recognition and made it a bad word. In Bengal, the education department is now too scared to use the beautiful local word ‘ramdhonu’ for rainbow. They fear the use of the word 'Ram' will offend Muslims, so it was changed to ‘rongdhonu’ in school textbooks.
We do not need this divisive and destructive politics in the name of hosting illegal immigrants. Yes, our ancient cultural credo is athithi devo bhabah (the guest is god), but we have the right to choose who should be our guest.
It is time say Quit India to those who are harmful for the nation.
Last Updated 9, Aug 2018, 4:27 PM IST