Illegal Bangladeshi Migration to India: Impact on Internal Security

Dr Anand Kumar is Associate Fellow at Manohar Parrikar Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses. Click here for detailed profile
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  • January 2011

    Migration, a worldwide phenomenon, has often been seen as beneficial for both the sending and receiving countries. However, post-9/11, the phenomenon is seen as a mixed blessing. It is also being realised that it is impossible to check illegal migration unless the sending country cooperates. In South Asia, India has been at the receiving end of the problem of illegal immigration from Bangladesh. This paper argues that such illegal migration is posing a threat to internal security because the issue has not been properly securitised. Migrants seem to have successfully bypassed legal hurdles, which has kept certain territories out of reach even for Indian nationals. If Bangladesh's internal politics and economic deprivation are major factors for this state of affairs, then permissiveness towards illegal immigration in Indian political circles is also responsible. The largely lenient political class has been prompted to take a close look at the issue as an increasing number of Bangladeshis have of late been found to be involved in terror activities.