The death of 19-year-old Manipuri student Richard Loitham is unfortunate. It is clear that the management of the Acharya's NRV School of Architecture, Bangalore, is interested only in covering up the incident. More shocking is the shoddy investigation by the city police. A fresh inquiry should be instituted to look into all aspects of the case, including ragging. Such incidents reinforce the belief that people of the northeast are discriminated against. There is a wide cultural and communication gap between the northeast and the rest of India. It is time we started taking pride in our diversity and stopped being judgmental on the basis of people's appearance and culture. The media should make a beginning by giving sufficient space to the happenings in the northeast.
Lalit Kumar Bhardwaj,
We, Indians, are quick to suspect, and promptly attribute racist motives to the killing of Indians abroad, with even the External Affairs Minister running from pillar to post. But is our own house in order? Last month, a Sikkimese student of nursing was killed in a mass shooting at a U.S. college but not a word of consolation or condolence came from the MoE. Apart from class, caste and gender, we have another ground on the basis of which we discriminate indiscriminately — race. And as long as this continues, we will not be a unified country.
We, northeasterns, can only pledge that we will never allow perpetrators of brutal murders to get away in our States just because the victim belongs to a different race. As the saying goes, if the bad doesn't stop being bad why should the good stop being good?
Students from the northeast have been suffering racial discrimination for years. But it is impossible to believe that a student could be killed over the switching of a television channel during an IPL match, as some reports suggest. It is important to bring the killers of Richard to justice if such incidents are not to recur.