From the Indian-Pakistan border comes a different view of the East Pakistan refugee problem. This?
From the Indian-Pakistan border comes a different view of the East Pakistan refugee problem. This official film from the Pakistani government shows refugees returning from India on Monday (June 14).
Reports from inside Pakistan estimate as many as a thousand refugees a day recrossing the border last weekend. Conflicting reports come from journalists on the other side of the border, who say that news of the first cholera outbreak being brought under control, has caused a new influx of refugees into India.
SYNOPSIS: From Meherpur, on the Indian-East Pakistan border, comes a different view of the refugee problem. This official film, released by the pakistan government, shows refugees returning from across the Indian border. Reports in Pakistani newspapers claim that, at some border crossing points last week, as many as a thousand refugees a day were returning to East Pakistan.
First they pass through a border checkpoint where they receive vaccination. One Pakistan newspaper said that these Moslem refugees at Meherpur spoke--to quote the report--"of maltreatment, torture and molestation" at the hands of Indian Hindus. These refugees returned, said the report, with a mixture of "joy and acute repentance" for having left their homes. Indian was accused of capitalising on refugee relief shipments to improve her own economic situation.
Pakistani authorities claim that special reception centres have been set up to help returning refugees on their way back to their homes. But conflicting reports come from the other side of the border. Newsmen say that a new wave of refugees has poured into that the cholera epidemic in India had been brought under control. The result has been a new outbreak of cholera.
Its a situation where human miseries are too easily turned into propaganda. Perhaps a balanced view of the problem can new emerge, following the weekend announcement by the Pakistan government that foreign newsmen are to be allowed into East Pakistan to report on conditions.