Foreign Policy Watch: India – EU

India rejects U.K. proposal on DNA tests for ‘illegal migrants

Note4students

Mains Paper 2: IR | Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:

Prelims level: Not Much

Mains level: Issue of illegal Indian immigrants in the UK


Govt. refuses to sign the pact citing ‘privacy issues’

  1. India rejected a proposal by the U.K. to use DNA sampling to establish the nationality of illegal migrants living there citing privacy issues
  2. Although a MoU on return of illegal migrants was initiated after due approval of the Union Cabinet
  3. As per the original MoU, security agencies in India were to verify the antecedents of illegal migrants without documents in the U.K. within 72 days and those with documents within 15 days
  4. If no report was given within the stipulated time frame, the illegal migrant would be deported automatically

DNA Sampling is unethical

  1. The U.K. authorities have earlier suggested that the nationality of document-less illegal migrants suspected to be Indians could be established by matching DNA samples of their family members living here
  2. India raised objections as this was a breach of privacy and unethical
  3. According to the British government’s estimates, there are around 1,00,000 Indians overstaying their visa in the U.K
  4. India has contested this and said that as per their estimate, the number will not be more than 2,000

Twists and turns

  1. In January, Union Cabinet approved the contents of a MoU on “return of illegal migrants” to be signed with U.K.
  2. The pact was expected to be signed during the visit of PM to London, but it was not included in the official list of business
  3. As per the original MoU, the security agencies in India were to verify the antecedents of document less illegal migrants in the U.K within 72 days and those with documents within 15 days
  4. India pulled out of the pact citing the time frame was not feasible.
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