By Nizam Zain
KUALA LUMPUR – The Immigration Department of Malaysia (JIM) arrested 248 foreigners in an Immigration Enforcement Operation at the Selayang Daily Market and Kuala Lumpur Wholesale Market early this morning.
Its Director-General, Datuk Khairul Dzaimee Daud said, the foreigners, especially the Rohingya ethnic were selling goods by the roadside of the two markets during the arrest after the department received public complaints.
He said, from the 248 foreigners they inspected, 139 did not have any personal identification documents. They comprised of nationals from Pakistan, India, Myanmar, Indonesia and Bangladesh.
“From this amount, 109 were United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) card holders,” he said.
“From this operation, 248 foreigners have been arrested for further inspection. 205 were men and 43 women,” he said in a news conference today.
The operation conducted at 8.00 am this morning involved 109 immigration officers from the Putrajaya, Kuala Lumpur and Selangor and assisted by other enforcement agencies such as the Malaysia Civil Defence Force (APM).
Khairul Dzaimee added, the immigration often receives complaints from the locals about the Rohingya ethnic people conducting business by the roadside of the wholesale market.
“Their presence affected the interests of the local merchants as the migrants did not pay for rent,” he said, revealing that the Rohingya ethnic are selling vegetables and other raw food items at a very low price compared to the locals because they obtain the goods discarded by the main local merchants.
To avoid arrest, some of them managed to escape while others disguised as customers and walked while buying essential items.
“The Immigration has detected their modus operandi for a long time.
“The operation today is also not our first operation. These two areas are placed under the hotspot by the JIM as omnipresent. There are also regular scheduled operations by the DBKL,” he added. -MalaysiaGazette