Who is a refugee?

A refugee is someone who has fled his or her country and cannot return because of a well-founded fear of persecution for reasons of race, religion, nationality, political opinion or membership in a particular social group. Refugees may also flee their countries due to serious and indiscriminate threats to life, physical integrity or freedom resulting from generalized violence or events seriously disturbing public order.

Who is an asylum-seeker?

When people flee their own country and seek refuge in another country, they can apply for asylum. While their asylum claim is being assessed, they are known as asylum-seekers.

Who is an internally displaced person (IDP)?

An internally displaced person (IDP) is a person who has been forced to flee his or her home for similar reasons as a refugee, but remains in his or her own country and has not crossed an international border. As the nature of conflict has changed in the last few decades, the number of IDPs has increased globally.

Who is an internal migrant?

An internal migrant is a person who migrates within one country, primarily for economic reasons.

Who is a stateless person?

A stateless person is a person who is not considered as a national by any State under the operation of its law.

Some stateless people may be refugees and vice-versa. If a person is both stateless and a refugee, recognition as a refugee grants him/her better protection.

What is the difference between refugees and economic migrants?

Economic migrants normally leave a country voluntarily to seek a better life for themselves and their families.

Should they decide to return home, they would continue to receive the protection of their government. Refugees flee because of the threat of persecution and cannot return safely to their homes.

Rights of an asylum-seeker or refugee

India is not party to the 1951 Refugee Convention or its 1967 Protocol and does not have a national refugee protection framework. However, it continues to grant asylum to a large number of refugees from neighbouring states and respects UNHCR's mandate for other nationals, mainly from Afghanistan and Myanmar

A refugee has a right to safe asylum, and not to be forcibly returned to a country where his/her life or freedom may be at risk. All asylum seekers and refugees have access to

  • The national legal system
  • The government healthcare system
  • Government schools for children’s education

Why do we care about refugees? We have our own problems here!

True But most of us have not had to run from our home because we were scared for our life.


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New Delhi - 110057,
Telephone No +91 11 4353 0444 (Switchboard),
+91 11 4353 0460

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