The report that thousands of panic-stricken people of the northeast living in Bangalore fled the city following rumours of violence targeting them made pathetic reading. That even after 65 years of Independence, an elected government is unable to guarantee its citizens the right to live in any part of the country is indeed shameful.
Bangalore is a cosmopolitan city and safe. It is peaceful and hospitable to everyone. The origin, source and basis of the rumours should be investigated thoroughly and proved false and baseless. If there is any truth in them, the law and order machinery should swing into action before the ill-designs against the people of the northeast are executed. It is unfortunate that the ethnic violence in Assam is reverberating in other parts of the country. Selective targeting, if any, should be nipped in the bud. As citizens of India and fellow human beings, it is our duty to protect one another and live in peace.
Although there have been instances in which Indians had to flee from one part of the country to another due to fear of violence, the Bangalore development deserves special attention. Because when the country was celebrating Independence Day with fervour and gaiety, many northeasterners in Bangalore were gathering at the railway station to leave the city in order to secure their life and independence.
While we still do not know whether or not there is any link between the Assam violence and the atmosphere of fear created in Bangalore, what we can do is make ourselves more open to all cultures, traditions, and religions in the interest of nation-building.
Niladri Sekhar Sen,
The exodus was undoubtedly caused by rumour-mongers who want to create panic in the minds of the northeasterners and the administration. There is a concerted and conscious effort by vested interests to sully Bangalore’s image. The police should spare no effort to throw a security umbrella in sensitive areas, more so where people from the northeast are concentrated. Need anybody stress that the northeast is also part of India?
It is unfortunate that some rumour-mongers have brought discredit to the fair image of Karnataka and Kannadigas. While the police have done well by assuring security to the people of the northeast, it is equally important to zero in on the mischief-mongers and bring them to book. The State government and leaders of all political parties must appeal to the people of the northeast to stop lending credence to wild rumours.
H.R. Bapu Satyanarayana
It would be a shame on Bangalore if people belonging to a region leave the city because they feel insecure. I expect the news of large-scale violence against the people of the northeast to be a rumour. The government, however, must ensure that everyone feels safe. It should deal with the mischievous elements that want to vitiate the atmosphere with a firm hand.
A. Hameed Yousuf,
Vested interests are taking advantage of the Assam riots to create disturbances in places such as Mumbai, Pune and, now, Bangalore. Unless the authorities curb the menace in the initial stages, it will go out of control.