The Sri Lankan Refugee Crimes and Crisis: Experience and Lessons Learnt from South India

Date01 October 2019
AuthorVijaya Somasundaram,Beulah Shekhar
Published date01 October 2019
Subject MatterArticles
The Sri Lankan Refugee
Crimes and Crisis:
Experience and Lessons
Learnt from South India
Beulah Shekhar1
Vijaya Somasundaram2
Sharing porous borders with its neighbours, India has played a regular host to
refugees from Nepal, Burma, Tibet, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bhutan, Bangladesh and
Sri Lanka. According to UNHCR, as of 2014, there are more than 200,000 refu-
gees living in India. Notwithstanding the fact that India is not a signatory to the
1951 UN Refugee Convention and its additional 1967 Protocol, its open-door
policy to refugees has had adverse political and socio-economic repercussions.
This article3 analyses the experience of the Indian state of Tamil Nadu with the
Sri Lankan refugees from the first influx in 1983 up to 2000, when the refugees
began returning to their homeland. The researchers identify the pull factors for
the refugee influx and push factors that led to their return and in the process
put together crucial learning that can be of significance to States dealing with the
problem of refugees.
Refugee, refugee influx, crimes by refugees, conflict
One who is hospitable to his guests, and when they leave, awaits his next guests, will be
a welcome-guest in the heavens.
—Thiruvalluvar, Thirukkural (ancient revered Tamil Text)
1 Manonmaniam Sundaranar University, Tirunelveli, Tamil Nadu, India.
2 Rajalakshmi Engineering College, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India.
3 Presented at the conference of the International Forum on Crime and Criminal Law in the Global Era
(IFCCLGE) held at New Delhi in December 2017.
Journal of Victimology
and Victim Justice
2(2) 215–225, 2019
2019 National Law
University Delhi
Reprints and permissions:
DOI: 10.1177/2516606919885524
Corresponding author:
Beulah Shekhar, Manonmaniam Sundaranar University, Abishekapatt, Tirunelveli, Tamil Nadu 627012,

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