AFRICANGLOBE – Given the recent spate of attacks against Africans in India, a Nigerian envoy has called for the Indian government to condemn the vigilante raid led by Delhi Law Minister Somnath Bharti against Africans living is south Delhi”.
“With the Goa incident (in which a Nigerian was murdered) recently, followed by this in the capital, I feel the time has come for the Indian government to condemn these incidents and also act against the perpetrators so that Africans living in this country feel reassured. They are feeling very insecure after such incidents,” Nigerian High Commissioner to India Ndubuisi Amaku told reporters in a recent interview.
The incident on Wednesday played out in front of TV cameras, with Bharti berating the police for not raiding the house of four women living in south Delhi’s Khirki Extension, whom he described as “Nigerians and Ugandans”.
“How can someone say that Black people are criminals?” Amaku asked.
The four Ugandan women who were targeted in the raid have complained to the police that they were physically harassed, threatened and racially abused by unidentified members of the raiding party. The women, who share a rented apartment, say they have earlier been victim to threats by Indian savages aimed at forcing them out of their home.
Underlining the point about the Indian government reassuring foreigners, particularly Africans, due of its interests in Africa, the Nigerian envoy said: “It is disturbing that there has been no official condemnation of the incident.”
He said that since such incidents often stemmed from ignorance and prejudice, government backing and actions can have a big impact on social attitudes.
“I don’t believe that Indians in general are influenced to act negatively by factors like race and religion. But it seems imperative that some politicians and police agencies need to be educated in race relations and in dealing with foreigners,” Amaku said.
“As an African, I feel violated and outraged that such an incident can take place against foreign citizens in India,” he added.
The Delhi minister in question reportedly said he was drawing up a list of African residents in the neighbourhood the women were staying in, and would use it to arrange raids to check for illegal activities.
“If the news reports are correct, it is a violation of the fundamental rights to non-discrimination of race, religion, caste or place of birth guaranteed under the Indian constitution,” the high commissioner contended.
“The fact that this is taking place in the capital and law enforcement agencies are involved, it seems no lessons have been learnt from the unfortunate Goa incident, where a Nigerian national lost his life,” Amaku said.
“Action that will reassure Africans living in India that they are welcome in this country [is imperative],” the high commissioner said.
Indian Government Minister Attack African Women In South Delhi