New Delhi: India on Monday assured the family of the Congolese national, who was killed in a brawl in Delhi on May 20, of a speedy trial in the case and prosecution of all those responsible for the crime as per law.
This was conveyed by a senior official of Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) who met the family members of Masonda Ketada Oliver at the airport on their arrival in Delhi.
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He also informed them that the government of India will bear all expenses related to dispatch of mortal remains of Oliver, MEA spokesperson Vikas Swarup said. He said that the family members thanked the Indian government for its assistance.
Read: Congolese national killing: Oliver’s father takes loan to get his body
They were told that External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has instructed speedy trial in the case.
23-year-old Congolese national Oliver, who was a French teacher at a private institute, was beaten to death in Vasant Kunj area of South Delhi following a brawl over hiring of an autorickshaw.
Envoys of African countries had expressed shock and outrage over the killing following which India assured them of safety of African nationals.
“The Group of African Heads of Mission have met and deliberated extensively on this latest incidence in the series of attacks to which members of the African community have been subjected to in the last several years,” a statement by Alem Tsehage Woldemariam, ambassador of Eritrea and the dean of the Group of African Heads of Mission, said.
In his statement, Woldemariam said: “Accordingly, the Indian government is strongly enjoined to take urgent steps to guarantee the safety of Africans in India including appropriate programmes of public awareness that will address the problems of racism and Afro-phobia in India.”
He also called upon the media, civil society, think-tanks, research institutions, parliamentarians, politicians and community leaders to play major roles in addressing the stereotypes and prejudices against Africans.
Woldemariam said that the African group has requested that the Africa Day celebrations being organised by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) on May 26 in Delhi be postponed.
“They have also decided not to participate in the celebrations, except the cultural troupe from the Kingdom of Lesotho,” the statement said.
Woldemariam said the African heads of missions have noted with deep concern that “several attacks and harassment of Africans have gone unnoticed without diligent prosecution and conviction of perpetrators”.