Advises students to integrate, not lend credence to rumours

Following the panic exodus of people from the northeast residing in Bangalore over the last three days, a delegation from Arunachal Pradesh has sought land to construct an Arunachal Pradesh Bhavan here as a confidence-building measure.

The request came from Sanjay Takam, MP from Arunachal Pradesh, and Kesayno Damo, Deputy Resident Commissioner, Arunachal Pradesh, during their meeting with Karnataka Home Minister R. Ashok here on Saturday.

Historical factors

“The northeast … is haunted by unemployment, historical isolation and socioeconomic underdevelopment. There are not many good educational institutions in the region, which has forced our students to come to places like Bangalore to study,” Mr. Takam pointed out. “The Arunachal Pradesh Bhavan could come to the rescue of students and workforce from the northeast at times of crisis like this.”

Assuring the delegation of help, Mr. Ashok, who is also the Deputy Chief Minister, advised it to send a formal proposal. He said only 5 per cent of the close to 3 lakh settlers from the northeast had moved out. “We will provide accommodation for all the students in a convention hall if that will make them feel secure,” he said.

‘Don’t spread rumours’

Mr. Takam and Mr. Damo, who interacted with over 100 students to understand their apprehensions, advised them to stay in groups for the next few days and also learn the local language. “You should also embrace the local culture,” Mr. Takam said, and added: “Tell your friends who have gone home not to spread rumours. Let them not aggravate the situation and create more problems.”

In the interaction, Dipankar Kalita, a student from Assam, said most of the alleged incidents and threats were rumours. “But,” he pointed out, “over the past few days people have been taking advantage of the situation and are actually threatening people.”

‘Not just rumours’

While Yabi Tamchi, a student of St. Joseph’s College of Science and Arts, was torn between leaving and staying back, Zedino Seyie, a Mount Carmel College student, said it was not just all rumours and there were some nasty incidents. She, however, said the victims had to share part of the blame as they were too scared to go to the police. She told The Hindu , “If we cannot go by the law, justice cannot come to us.”