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20,000 Indian immigrants in US fear deportation as Trump repeals DACA

US Attorney General Jeff Sessions yesterday announced the rescinding of the DACA

Press Trust of India  |  Washington 

Donald trump
US President Donald Trump | Photo: Reuters

Thousands of people from India, who arrived in the US illegally as children, are fearing deportation after President Donald Trump's decision to repeal the (DACA) programme, a South Asian Advocacy group has said.

The number of such people from India, could be more than 20,000, according to an estimate carried out by South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT).


US Attorney General Jeff Sessions yesterday announced the rescinding of the Deferred Action for Children Arrival (DACA), an Obama-era amnesty programme that granted work permits to immigrants who arrived in the country illegally as children.

The announcement, which was anticipated for the past few days, was greeted with protests from across the country.

"Over 27,000 Asian Americans, including 5,500 Indians and Pakistanis, have already received An additional estimated 17,000 individuals from and 6,000 respectively are eligible for DACA, placing in the top ten countries for eligibility," SAALT said.

With the termination of DACA, these individuals could face deportation at the discretion of the administration, it said.

"The President's decision to terminate puts 800,000 individuals at risk of deportation from the only country they've ever called home. Ending is the latest evidence of this administration's utter lack of commitment to our nation's founding values of equality and fairness," Suman Raghunathan, executive director of SAALT, said.

"Our current patchwork of immigration policies and programs is broken, and we demand the does its job to craft a commonsense immigration process that creates a road- map to citizenship for aspiring new Americans.

"This is the only way to align our immigration laws with the values Americans hold dear," she said.

In a statement, South Asian Bar Association (SABA) president Rishi Bagga said "DREAMERS" were brought to the US by their parents in hopes of a better life.

"As children, they did not choose to break the law. Most of these young men and women have never returned to the countries of their birth, and many do not even speak the language of their native countries. Rescinding effectually takes away these young people's right to live in the only country they have ever known,"Bagga said.

SABA said when the program ends, the 800,000-plus registrants who relied upon the federal government's representations by coming out of the shadows and willingly shared their information with the federal government will be in danger of deportation.

In the vast majority of cases, recipients who are gainfully employed in a variety of professions, including as doctors, lawyers, and engineers, will be unable to work legally in the United States.

This number includes over 10,000 South Asian recipients, it said.

First Published: Wed, September 06 2017. 10:00 IST
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