Home Minister P. Sabitha Indra Reddy has reiterated that steps have been taken to provide protection for students and employees hailing from the North East though there have been no untoward incidents in the city or State.

Ms. Sabitha held a meeting with the police and Home Department officials in the presence of two Assam Ministers -- Rockybul Hussain and Pradyut Bordoloi -- in the Secretariat here on Saturday in the wake of panic-stricken North Eastern people leaving Chennai, Bangalore and other places.

Urging people hailing from North East not to believe the rumours, she said the government would give full protection. The State is peaceful, she said. The two Assam Ministers expressed their happiness with the proactive response of the State government.

Ms. Sabitha said that some students and employees received calls from their anxious family members from the North East following which they left for their native places. She asked all such people to return. An inquiry would be conducted to nail those who sent the bulk messages.

Mr. Bordoloi was all praise for people of Andhra Pradesh saying that they were very friendly. The State was also involved in the development projects in the North East as at least 20 companies from the State were executing road and other projects in the region, he said.

He said they would convey to their Chief Minister the peaceful situation prevailing in the city. Hyderabad Staff Reporter adds: Several people’s organisations and politicians have squarely blamed the Centre for the ethnic violence in Assam and its failure to contain the aftermath. “It’s a monumental failure and the violence is still continuing,” former Rajya Sabha member (CPI-M) P. Madhu charged.

Expressing concern over the fleeing of North Eastern Indians out of fear, he demanded that the Centre provide security to them.

Former Rajya Sabha member of CPI, Syed Aziz Pasha demanded that the Centre impose President’s rule in Assam as that State government had failed to control the law and order situation. Balladeer Gadar, Major S.G. Quadri of Help Hyderabad and others also spoke.