Tamil Nadu Police Arrest Second Illegal Bangladeshi Immigrant In Three Weeks From Chennai Suburb: Here’s A Chronology Of Such Immigration

by M R Subramani - Nov 25, 2020 07:36 AM
Tamil Nadu Police Arrest Second Illegal Bangladeshi Immigrant In Three Weeks From Chennai Suburb: Here’s A Chronology Of Such Immigration  Representative Image
Snapshot
  • Illegal Bangladeshi immigrants find their way to the deep south of India, disguising as Bengalis.

    Observers say that many illegal Bangladeshi immigrants are present in Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Telangana and Karnataka, where they are employed at construction sites, rubber plantations, coffee estates and other related sectors, besides brothels.

A 22-year-old woman from Bangladesh has been arrested by Tamil Nadu police from Minjur, an industrial Chennai suburb, for staying without a valid visa.

This is the second such arrest of an illegal Bangladeshi immigrant near Chennai in the last three weeks after a 22-year-old man was arrested from another industrial suburb Avadi.

Local media said that the 22-year woman, Papia Ghosh, arrested by police yesterday (24 November), had entered India illegally after befriending a West Bengal resident, Shashi Sheikh, through Facebook.

Both of them had come to the hosiery town of Tiruppur and stayed their briefly. Sheikh got a job with a container firm at Minjur and this brought them to the Chennai suburb.

Ironically, both of them had registered their marriage at Pollachi in the State’s Coimbatore district in February.

Three weeks ago, Tamil Nadu police arrested 22-year-old Basha, who entered the country illegally and was working at a construction site in Arikambedu near Avadi Heavy Vehicles Factory which manufactures the latest battle tanks for Indian defence forces.

Basha had crossed into India four years ago and had worked at the hilly resort town of Kodaikanal for two years before coming to Avadi two months ago.

This is the latest in a slew of incidents in which illegal Bangladeshi immigrants have been detected in this part of the country.

Observers say that many illegal Bangladeshi immigrants are present in Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Telangana and Karnataka, where they are employed at construction sites, rubber plantations, coffee estates and other related sectors, besides brothels.

In August this year, a 30-year-old Bangladesh woman was arrested from Madurai for staying illegally. She had married S Thoufiq, founder of Naam Manithar Katchi, who was involved in the kidnapping of businessmen for ransom to fund terrorist activities in the region.

A month ago, an illegal Bangladeshi woman was arrested from the Uppal area in Telangana’s capital Hyderabad for running a brothel along with her Indian husband.

A native of Narayanagunj district in Bangladesh, the 35-year-old Moyna Akhtar aka Shafeeq Ul Islam had even obtained an Aadhar card.

Another Bangladeshi, a 26-year-old woman, was rescued from a brothel last month from Rachakonda near Hyderabad. She had entered illegally from Jashua district.

In June this year, a group of illegal Bangladeshi immigrants were detected in Tiruppur trying to get employment in the hosiery industry. Another six-member group of illegal migrants were found living in Cheral village in Kerala’s Ernakulam district.

These illegal immigrants earn up to Rs 800 as daily wages in Kerala, taking up various jobs. Kerala is facing a labour shortage for construction and rubber tapping, as locals find taking up such jobs a hurdle to getting married.

In Tamil Nadu, locals find easy money from various social welfare schemes and the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee scheme, forcing industries to look for workers from north and north-east regions.

Illegal Bangladeshi immigrants find their way to the deep south of India, disguising as Bengalis.

In May, Swarajya reported that illegal Bangladesh immigrants were detected at another Chennai suburb, Tambaram, after two groups of immigrants fought over sharing of Coronavirus relief materials.

The groups were let scot-free with police saying that they had left the place to another one. The illegal immigrants had come from Bengaluru, where they were employed in the construction sector.

In February this year, 40 illegal Bangladesh immigrants were deported by Tamil Nadu after discreet checks found they had settled in various parts of the State, while they arrested another four illegal immigrants later that month from Erode district.

In January, police arrested five illegal Bangladesh immigrants in Krishnagiri district, that borders Bengaluru in Karnataka.

In December 2018, Times of India reported that 21 illegal Bangladesh immigrants detected living in Tiruppur after getting Aadhar, voter identity and ration cards besides passports had felt “being at home” in Tamil Nadu. One of the immigrants had even filed an income tax return.

S B Chavan, who was the Home Minister during P V Narasimha Rao’s 1991-96 rule, told Parliament, in response to a question, that “it is difficult to estimate the number of Bangladesh immigrants illegally living in India as they enter surreptitiously and are able to mingle easily with the local population because of ethnic-lingual similarities".

The Institute of Defence Studies and Analysis, in a report on illegal migration from Bangladesh in December 2016, said that in the absence of any authentic official data on the number of illegal migrants, the census data on population growth has been always presented as an indicator of large-scale illegal migration from Bangladesh to India, particularly the North-East.

M.R. Subramani is Executive Editor, Swarajya. He tweets @mrsubramani

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