London — The British Government has ruled out scrapping of present immigration controls which have come in for severe criticism, particularly in their application to people from India and other non-White countries.

Mr. David Waddington, home office minister who is in charge of immigration, told the House of Commons that scrapping of the immigration act and controls would be disastrous for community relations in this country. He rejected charges that the rules and the way they were operated were odious and detestable.

The minister was responding to strong criticism of the immigration controls by the opposition Labor Party which pledged during a debate in the House to replace the present legislation with an act which would be not only non-sexist and non-racist but antisexist and anti-racist too.

The House was discussing a report by the statutory commission for racial equality on immigration controls. It had called for a change of emphasis in the operation of immigration procedure so that the risk of genuine applicants being refused entry is reduced to a minimum.

Mr. Gerald Kaufman, chief opposition spokesman on home affairs, said that the report was saying that Britain had a racist system because it had racist ministers. Moreover, their racism is motivated by their wish to prevent any tiny number of people possibly no more than 5,000 in

The first year and fewer after that from coming to Britain, he added.

Several other labor members criticized the immigration policy and controls but the government stuck to its position with Mr. Waddington calling some of the central conclusions of the report very odd.

Meanwhile, immigration to Britain for the Indian sub-continent is to be examined for the second time in three years by a select committee of the Commons on race relations and immigration.

Article extracted from this publication >>  June 14, 1985