In an unprecedented move, Mexico has deported over 300 Indians to Delhi, the Latin-American country’s National Migration Institute (INM) said.
The move follows a deal Mexico struck with the United States in June, vowing to significantly curb US-bound migration in exchange for averting US tariffs on Mexican exports. The deported Indians were reportedly in Mexico waiting to cross over to the US.
The 310 men and one woman that INM said were in Mexico illegally were sent on a chartered flight, accompanied by federal immigration agents and Mexico's National Guard. They arrived in New Delhi on Friday.
Indian officials stated that most of the deportees were from Punjab and the police will run checks to see if any of them had a criminal history.
INM said the deportees had been scattered in eight states around Mexico, including in southern Mexico from where many Indian migrants enter the country, hoping to transit to the US border.
“It is unprecedented in INM’s history - in either form or the number of people - for a transatlantic air transport like the one carried out on this day,” INM said in a statement.
In recent years, Indian migrants have made efforts to illegally cross over to the US from Mexico. The number of migrants detained along the southern US border over the past 12 months rose to nearly 1 million, according to official data. In September, INM reported that 42 Indians were among 167 illegal migrants detained by authorities in Veracruz state.