Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (UK) has mentioned the launch of new legislation on migrant channel crossings at Downing Street.
The new plan will ban refugees arriving in the UK by small boats from claiming asylum.
About Britain’s Migration policy:
The 2022 Nationality and Borders Act barred people from claiming asylum in Britain if they had passed through a safe country such as France.
But in practice, people fleeing war and persecution can’t be sent home, and no countries — other than Rwanda and Albania have agreed to take deportees.
This week Britain unveiled the Illegal Migration Bill, which calls for people arriving by unauthorized routes to be detained, deported to their homeland or “a safe third country” and banned from ever re-entering the U.K.
The migrant population in Britain:
The British government has noted that the people migrating to the UK are economic migrants rather than refugees and points to an upswing last year in arrivals from Albania, a European country that the U.K. considers safe.
The other main countries of origin last year were Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq and Syria.
Of those whose applications have been processed, a large majority were granted asylum in the U.K.
Why do people want to migrate to Britain?
Most of the migration to the UK has been observed from France, in view of Cultural ties and native links.
France and England under the Channel opened in 1994, have agreed to share the migrated people namely as refugees and migrants.
Does the bill affect India?
Indians are the third-largest group of migrants crossing into the UK over the English Channel on risky small boats so far this year, according to the UK Home Office.
Indians now account for about a fifth of 1,180 migrants who have attempted the perilous crossing this year. Afghans were the most numerous, followed by Syrians.
The arrangement of permitting Indians to enter Serbia without a visa ended on January 1 as part of Serbia’s efforts to comply with EU visa requirements, resulting in some Indians travelling in small boats into the EU and then to the UK.
Serbia is the only country in Europe that allowed Indians without any entry permits.
So, definitely, the new illegal immigration bill will impact the Indians who were entering the UK from sea routes, without any permits for taking asylum.
India-UK mobility agreement:
Migration and mobility partnership: It will include “covering the movement of students and professionals as well as irregular migration keeping in view the UK’s new skills-based immigration policy”.
The agreement included a young professionals scheme to allow 3,000 young Indian professionals to come to the UK each year.
The scheme was confirmed in November 2022 and India and the UK exchanged letters formalising the scheme in January 2023, with an implementation date to be announced.