Bengaluru: Karnataka Home Minister G. Parmeshwara on Thursday said that the brutal attack on a Tanzanian student in Bengaluru was 'not a racial attack'.
"It's not a racial attack. It is just a response to the accident. Bengaluru does not have that kind of an attitude," said Parmeshwara .
Deccan Chronicle had exclusively reported on Wednesday that the 21-year-old Tanzanian girl, who is a second year BBA student of Acharya College, had absolutely nothing to do with the car that ran over and killed a 35-year-old Hesaraghatta resident on Sunday night. Yet, while the local police stood by and watched, she was repeatedly beaten and then stripped of all her clothes and made to parade around naked.
Five persons have been arrested in this connection.
The state home minister also said that this incident would not have taken place had the Sudanese not killed somebody in the accident. "The five accused are being interrogated by the police officials. We have already informed the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) about it," said Parmeshwara.
"The allegations that their clothes were torn off and they were paraded naked have not been verified as per the investigation so far," he added.
Parmeshwara also said that more arrests would be made when the people in the mob are identified and added that this matter would not be taken casually.
"There are 12,000 foreign students in Bangalore itself. Their protection and their pursuit of education is our duty, especially the Home Minister. But this kind of incident should not happen," he said.
Parmeshwara further said there are times when foreign students stay even after their passports get expired and, therefore, they are going to pursue such cases.
Giving details about the accident, the Home Minister said that Sudan's Mohd. Ismail was driving the car under the influence of liquor and then he hit K. Sanaullah and his wife.
"The woman died on the spot. Sanaullah was injured and he was taken to the hospital. In the incident, Ismail was also injured. During this time, around three to four people gathered and set the car on fire," he said.
"Near the spot, some students were coming in a car. Jamaal Ibrahim, the driver, and a Tanzanian student and others were then attacked by the mob," he added.
He further said that the DGP and Commissioner went to the spot today and also spoke to the students. "The case has been transferred to the Central Crime Branch," he said.
Parmeshwara also asserted that the state government would provide protection to the foreign students, but if they do anything against the law of the land then it's a different issue.
Meanwhile, Karnataka Director General of Police (DGP) Om Prakash, who met the Tanzanian student as part of the investigation process on Thursday, said that the victim was not stripped and paraded.
"She did not say that she was stripped and paraded. Yesterday, when she gave in writing, it was found that her top cloth was found removed, which she realised subsequently. Initially her statement could not be recorded, that is why Section 355 was in place," Prakash told the media here.
"I checked the case by going to the police station. I talked to the victim. I did not record her statement because it should be part of a detailed inquiry. In many places, the people have reacted in the similar manner. Law is same for everyone and we will take action as per the law," he added.
Concerned over the incident, the Centre on Wednesday sought a report from the Karnataka government and action taken against the perpetrators of the crime.
In a communication, the Home Ministry asked the state government to give a detailed report about the circumstances leading to the assault of the Tanzanian woman, action taken against those allegedly involved in it and steps taken for the protection of the victim.
The Home Ministry also said that the report should be sent as early as possible for taking necessary action by the central government as the incident had happened involving a foreign national.
Meanwhile, Union Minister Kiren Rijiju said the incident is a matter of shame and no racial discrimination will be tolerated in the country.
"We will not allow racial discrimination to take place in the country. This is a matter of shame for the entire nation," the Minister of State for Home said....