A batch of Hindu and Sikh refugees will be returning back to Pakistan today as their hopes of getting citizenship in India crash.
It has been a year since the Citizenship Amendment Act was passed by the Parliament but the government is yet to notify it. Meanwhile, the refugees on long term visa (LTV) hoping to benefit from the CAA faced financial hardships. The administrative apathy has driven their hopes to the ground.
ET quoted Shreedhar, a 37-year-old refugee who came to India from Umerkot district in Pakistan’s Sindh province and has been staying on a long-term visa: “For the past four years, I have been running to FRRO (Foreigners Regional Registration Office) Jodhpur and home ministry in New Delhi to get visas for my wife and children. I have given up now and want to go back.”
Reportedly, the government officials were found to be indulging in harassment and corruption during field verification in some cases, adding to the woes of the refugees.
“We came to India in search of better livelihood. For the past one year, we have been trying to get LTV but to no avail,” said Mithoon, who belongs to Hyderabad in Sindh.
“My family is facing financial trouble due to lockdown and Covid-19. They have now decided to go back,” he added.
The refugees will be returning to Pakistan as a part of 243 of Pakistani nationals 243 Pakistani nationals, including those stranded in India because of Covid-19,
The union home ministry has given them the permission to return to Pakistan via the Wagah border.
The ministry granted “no objection” to the “exit” of the Pakistani nationalsand said that those who were staying in India on LTV or whose application for grant of LTV was under consideration with the authorities would be required to obtain an exit permit from the FRRO/FRO concerned.
“For Pakistani nationals, we have facilitated their movement by road. All returning Pakistani nationals will be screened as per international norms and health protocols at the Integrated Check Post,” said an official.
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