A day after it set up “holding centres” under the Foreigners Act in the Hiranagar sub-jail in Kathua, the Jammu and Kashmir administration on Saturday rounded up 168 Rohingya refugees, including women and children, from Jammu and placed them there.
The holding centres with a capacity to hold 250 people were set up by a Home Department notification on Friday under Section 3(2)e of Foreigners Act. These immigrants were not holding valid passports required in terms of Section (3) of the Passports Act, a senior government official said, adding that they were in the process of identifying more such immigrants.
After sending them to the holding centres, nationality verification will be done as per the prescribed process, the official added, saying that on the basis of this, the procedure for deportation will be initiated.
Sources said the refugees were brought from Jammu to the sub-jail in buses on Saturday evening. The sub-jail had been prepared for keeping the Rohingya refugees “staying illegally” nearly a week ago, when all the prisoners and undertrials lodged there were shifted to other jails.
According to a senior police officer, all the refugees were living in J&K without valid documents.