Police book six cases over ‘threats’ to people from the northeastern region

The Karnataka government has summoned six companies of Rapid Action Force (RAF) to Bangalore to assist the local police in maintaining law and order. Besides the RAF, the government has drafted the services of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and the Karnataka State Reserve Police (KSRP) to assist the RAF.

The police so far have booked six cases over “threats” to people from the northeastern region and the Home Ministry has issued a direction to initiate action against police officers who allegedly refused to receive complaints of threats from people from northeastern States.

Detailing the steps taken by the government to instil confidence among the people from the northeast, Deputy Chief Minister and Minister for Home R. Ashok said the government had information about the people behind the inflammatory SMS messages. “The intelligence department has been directed to take action against them,” he said.

He said that the RAF and various wings of Karnataka police would be deployed in the areas with concentration of people from the northeast. “The Home Secretary has been asked to issue notification banning SMS and MMS after consulting the legal department”, he said.

Replying to a query on the action taken against those who have sent SMSs, he said that the government had definite information about the persons who were responsible for it, but it was not possible to divulge details, as that would hamper investigation. The government was constantly updating the Centre about the events in the State capital, he added.

Following the rumours, people belonging to northeastern States living in other cities, including Mysore, Mangalore and Hosur in Tamil Nadu, were rushing to the city railway station to board the train. An estimated 16,000 people left Bangalore till August 16 and another 2,000 were waiting at the railway station on Friday afternoon, Mr. Ashok said.

“However, the number of people leaving the State, has reduced considerably, because of the consistent effort of the State government”, he noted.

At railway station

Mr. Ashok, along with Minister for Law and Parliamentary Affairs Suresh Kumar, spent considerable time at the railway station to convince the panic-stricken people that there would be no danger for their lives in Karnataka. “We succeeded in convincing over 200 people,” he added.

Earlier, Mr. Ashok held a meeting with associations of security agencies, owners of various malls, hotels and nursing colleges and assured them of complete security. “They have been directed to provide adequate security to the northeast people working with them and intimate any incident immediately to the nearest police station”, he said.

Mr. Suresh Kumar said that in the second communication sent to the Union Government, the State government had explained the reason for people from northeastern States fleeing Bangalore. It was clarified that the disturbances in Assam prompted most of them to return to their native and be with them in the time of difficulty. The State also informed the Centre that stray incidents of attacks on them and circulation of threatening SMS promoted people to leave the city.

Don’t leave: CPI(M)

The State unit of the Communist Party of India (Marxists) on Friday urged the people from the northeastern region against leaving Bangalore and exhorted the government to provide protection to them.

The party demanded immediate action against rumourmongers, who are spreading fear among the community.

Addressing presspersons, State secretary of the CPI(M) G.V. Srirama Reddy said that there was no need for the people from the northeast to leave Bangalore as workers affiliated to trade unions of the party were prepared to provide security to them.