Meghalaya dumps 200 migrants | india | Hindustan Times
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Meghalaya dumps 200 migrants

The Northeast has invariably been paranoid about being run over by migrants. Thursday’s serial blasts across Assam seem to have taken the fear a notch higher, reports Rahul Karmakar.

india Updated: Nov 03, 2008 00:50 IST
Rahul Karmakar

The Northeast has invariably been paranoid about being run over by migrants. Thursday’s serial blasts across Assam seem to have taken the fear a notch higher.

The Meghalaya police on Sunday packed away some 200 people of “suspected nationality”, dumping them in a border area of Assam. Local organisations in the state, along with those in Arunachal Pradesh and Nagaland, have been pushing back alleged Bangladeshis into Assam over the past few months, but this is the first major government-sanctioned drive.

“These people were staying in low-cost houses in the Polo Ground area for some time. Following complaints, we ran a check on them,” N.M. Singh, officer in charge of Nongmynsong outpost, told HT from Shillong. “Though they claimed to be Indians, they did not possess any documents to prove their citizenship, and so we vacated them.”

The migrants were bundled onto a convoy of trucks and dropped off beyond the Assam-Meghalaya border at Byrnihat.

“Locals in the area reported the gathering of these labourers,” said Assam Police (Border) additional SP Jayashree Khersa. “These people have been detained at the Khetri police station for verification of their nationality. They will be sent to their respective villages if found to be Indians or deported.”

Tribal organisations in Meghalaya have been rounding up “suspected Bangladeshis” sporadically over the past few months. Their counterparts in Arunachal Pradesh and Nagaland are also involved in such activities.

Such drives have complicated problems in areas of Assam bordering the other northeastern states, often leading to conflicts between the “indigenous” and “illegal migrants”.