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Open Letter to Delhi CM Demanding Action Against Racist Minister: Concerned Citizens

January 22, 2014

Guest Post by a group of Concerned Citizens

Open Letter by Citizens to Delhi CM Demanding Action Against Racist Minister

To 
Shri Arvind Kejriwal, 
Founder, Aam Aadmi Party and 
Chief Minister, Delhi



CC: Shri Yogendra Yadav, Shri Prashant Bhushan 



Our Demands



1. Remove Somnath Bharti from his position as Law Minister immediately


2. Punish all those, including Somnath Bharti, guilty of instigating and perpetrating racist and sexual violence on African women


3. Delhi Police must come under Delhi Government, but Delhi Police must be accountable to Constitution and not to the bidding of Ministers and mobs 


4. Meet and apologise to the Ugandan women who have complained of racist, sexual violence

Dear Shri Arvind Kejriwal,

We are writing this to express our disquiet and distress at the unfolding saga of racist and xenophobic vigilantism that the AAP Government of Delhi is currently defending. 
You and your team that includes eminent social scientists and human rights lawyers, is in denial mode today regarding the racist acts led by your Law Minister, Somnath Bharti. All of you have claimed that the Minister was only asking the Delhi Police to crack down on ‘drug and sex rackets’, and that at worst he’s guilty of ‘politically incorrect’ choice of words. You have all told us that the Minister was merely championing the local people’s complaints about the ‘crime’ of ‘prostitution’, ‘drug trade’ and ‘police corruption,’ and that it is the media, (not the Minister or the locals), that have chosen to focus on the racial identity of the ‘criminals’. We would, therefore, like to tell you that in our view, Somnath Bharti’s own description of the ‘raid’ that he led, confirms our concerns about racism.

‘They are not like you or me’ 



On the night in question, Somnath Bharti arrived with media channels and Delhi Police, and a crowd of his supporters. He told the media “I have received a lot of complaints from women in this locality against foreign nationals, yeh hum aur aap jaise nahin hain (They are not like you or me)”
(http://indianexpress.com/article/india/politics/two-delhi-ministers-turn-vigilantes/2/).

Is it not a copybook case of racism, to argue that ‘foreign nationals’ are ‘not like us’?



Nigerian Prostitutes vs ‘local ma behen beti’ 



Interacting with the media that night, he said that “Nigerians girls and men all indulge in prostitution and drug trafficking”, posing a threat to “local ma, behen, beti.” You can hear him say this on this video link:

[ http://www.newindianexpress.com/nation/Somnath-Bharti-Accuses-Delhi-Police-of-Negligence-After-Late-Night-Raid/2014/01/16/article2002718.ece ]
Is it not racist to allege that an entire community of Africans are prostitutes and drug traffickers? Isn’t it copybook racism to profile ‘foreigners’ as a threat to the safety of ‘local’ women? Hasn’t it been a routine ploy of racism (and communalism and casteism) to profile the targeted community as a threat to the safety of ‘our’ women? 
Clear case of profiling 

Somnath Bharti’s words do not identify specific individuals as criminals: he refers to any and every person of African nationality as a criminal. And his actions went on to target any and every African, irrespective of any proof against specific individuals. Has the Minister not profiled an entire community as ‘criminal’, much as the colonial rulers profiled entire tribes as ‘criminal’? 
That night, he has told media he spotted several African women standing near a car, and they fled when they saw him. He asked his supporters to ‘catch them’; two were ‘caught and handed over to the police.’ He said a car then drew up with three African women in it; and he asked people to stop the car, and hand the three women over to the police van. What basis did Mr Bharti have to assume these women were criminals – except their race/colour and the fact that they were out on a street at night? Is this not a copybook case of racist, sexist witch-hunt of unknown women, based purely on the fact that they were the ‘wrong’ colour and out at the ‘wrong’ time of night? The ‘sting operation’ conducted by a channel to purportedly expose an African sex worker, is dubbed ‘black beauty’ – again, a copybook phrase redolent of racist sexism! 

Racist witch-hunt 
In the same video link, Mr Bharti can be seen demanding that the police raid each and every single home in a building said to be occupied by African nationals. The police refused. The next morning, media reports say, Mr Bharti again went to Khirkee Extension, and addressed people, saying “I am here to solve your problems. I request you to make a list of houses jahan aise log rehte hain (where such people live). I will be visiting each of these houses and I will urge the police to do the same. I have taken a vow to put an end to such things in this area.”

When a Minister demands that the police raid each and every home of Africans; when he asks people to list such homes and threatens to ‘visit’ each such home to check for prostitution and drugs, can we fail to recognise it as a classic racist witch-hunt? 

Protector of Constitution turns perpetrator, hands over women to mob 
The Minister asked his supporters to ‘catch’ fleeing, terrified African women and ‘hand them over’ to the police. When a mob lays hands on women who have been branded in prurient imagination as ‘prostitutes’ and as the ‘foreign’ sexual ‘other’ of ‘ma, behen, beti’, wasn’t sexual violence against these women, virtually inevitable? Is it not flagrantly illegal on the Ministers part to endanger the women by asking an agitated crowd to ‘catch’ them? These Ugandan women have alleged that they were beaten, groped sexually. On what basis do you deem these allegations to be false? 
There is no basis whatsoever to assume that all the African women concerned are prostitutes. But is a Minister justified in asking a mob to ‘catch women’ even if they are indeed prostitutes? Is it the Government’s contention that only ‘ma, behen, beti’ are entitled to safety and dignity – and that prostitutes can be left to the mercy of moralistic mobs? 
Are human rights mere niceties that can be done away with? Can a Minister insist that a Police officer conduct sweeping, indiscriminate raids, minus any search warrant and other due processes? Without any other evidence, can women be forced to undergo drug tests only because of their race and nationality? The drug tests and cavity searches to which these women were subjected, turned up negative: when do you plan to apologise to them for the false allegation and the indignity, not to mention the groping they suffered at the hands of your Minister’s supporters?



Racist politics and violence 



The African residents of Khirkee, as well as Indians who have been working amongst them for quite a long time, the Khirkee Extension RWA has been activated on the plank of anti-African hatred. They say there have been several instances of brutal violence, sexual harassment and groping, against African women in Khirkee Extension, and even instances of stoning of African women and children. The police, they say, used to be insensitive to the complaints of the Africans. Meanwhile, there were several racist complaints made to the police about the ‘stink’ of African food and the ‘short skirts’ worn by African women, and complaints by the RWA accusing the Africans of ‘drugs’ and ‘prostitution’. But after repeated, patient intervention by those making anti-racist efforts, the police did respond, and according to the Africans and their Indian friends, the Malviya Nagar SHO Vijay Pal had become more sensitive in his dealings with the African community, and acted to protect the African women on the night of the raid. Today, this SHO has been penalised – for failing to obey the orders of the Minister who expected him to indiscriminately raid the homes of all people of African nationalities. This sends a dangerous message to the Police – that if they uphold democratic rights of vulnerable individuals or groups as mandated by the Constitution, instead of succumbing to political pressure and the sentiments of an inflamed crowd, they will be penalised. 
If the issue were really one of a few individual criminals, the Minister would have cited specific intelligence inputs, specific names, and sought a search warrant and raid of those suspected individuals. When the Police are asked to indiscriminately raid/arrest all persons of a particular race or community, is it not the duty of the Police, in a democracy, to refuse? 

Model of Resolving Disputes

We understand that your Minister was concerned about the complaints of people against alleged drug and prostitution rackets. We ask – why was he unconcerned about the evidence of long-standing racist violence and discrimination, which had been brought to his notice by activists in the area? The AAP has spoken of building institutions like mohalla sabhas. Why could your Minister – or you yourself – make no attempt to hold such sabhas with both African and non-African communities, facilitating dialogue, dissolving prejudice and myths, and addressing all genuine issues? Why did Somnath Bharti, instead, act on the complaints of one side alone? Why did he indulge in utterances calculated to further inflame racist and sexist passions against Africans, especially African women? Once again on 19th January, Mr Bharti addressed a crowd in Khirki extension, stoking passions by warning Africans that ““Good people, irrespective of their nationality, who are here to study or work, they will be welcomed. However, if they dance naked, sell drugs and run sex rackets, then there won’t be anyone worse than us. These people will have to leave” and that “vulgar people won’t be allowed to remain in India”

The role of the police 


When you held your dharna, you claimed that your main aim was to bring the Delhi Police under the Delhi Government – a goal which we support. But you have raised your dharna without any commitment from the Centre on this supposedly central demand! Instead, you raised the dharna following disciplinary action against two SHOs including the Malviya Nagar SHO. It’s quite apparent to us here that the dharna’s aim was not police reform or accountability of the police – but to embolden your Minister and penalise the police officer who refused to cooperate with his racist raid. You personally claimed that the Ugandan High Commission had written approving of Mr Bharti’s raid. Did you bother to verify the veracity of the letter before using it to try and cloak your Minister’s racism with a facade of approval from the Ugandan Government? 

Where religious minorities, oppressed castes, stigmatised races/ethnicities (such as Blacks or people from the North East), women, gay people and transgenders are concerned, do we not expect sensitivity on part of the Police and elected representatives? When it comes to such vulnerable social groups that are at the receiving end of bias, do we not expect the Police to act in accordance with Constitutional values of justice, rather than to do the bidding of a Minister or a mob? 

We expect you to consider the ample and undeniable evidence of racism on Mr Bharti’s part, and remove him from his post as Minister.

We also call upon the AAP to initiate disciplinary action under AAP’s own rules, against Mr Bharti for his racist hate-mongering. 
We also call upon you to initiate a public dialogue with the Ugandan women who have alleged sexual violence and with the African people of Khirki Extension, and issue a public apology to them all. 
We demand that you probe and punish all those along with Mr Bharti, who indulged in mob violence and sexual violence against the Ugandan women. 
These measures are an urgent necessity to diffuse the ugly racism that is escalating day by day.

One of the Iandlords who had rented rooms to Ugandans and had defended their rights, was subjected to stoning. The Africans of Khirki Extension and their Indian friends are in a state of insecurity and terror. 
Delhi, for centuries, has an enviable history of inclusive, cosmopolitan culture. At the same time, Delhi is also known for an ugly underbelly of racist and regionalist prejudice against people from the North East, against migrants from Bihar, against black people, and of course of sexism against women. We expect your party and your Government to ensure that your actions are informed by the highest standards of inclusivity and democratic values. Unfortunately, your attitude towards your Law Minister’s inexcusable conduct does not reassure us in this direction.

The Undersigned,

(to add your signature – visit – ‘The Open Letter to Delhi CM Against Racist Minister‘ web page at Avaaz.org )

1. Kavita Srivastava, PUCL

2. Kalpana Mehta, Manasi Swasthya Sansthan, Indore

3. Dunu Roy, Hazards Centre

4. Nivedita Menon, JNU

5. Pamela Philipose

6. Saba Dewan, Film maker, New Delhi

7. Amit Bhaduri, economist

8. Nirmalangshu Mukherjee, Delhi University

9. Uma Chakravarti, historian

10. Suneeta Dhar, Jagori

11. G. Arunima, Associate Professor, Centre for Women’s Studies School of Social Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University

12. Nandini Sundar, Delhi University

13. Satya Sivaraman

14. Malini Kochupillai

15. Rakhi Sehgal, Labour Activist, New Delhi

16. Harsh Kapoor

17. Shuddhabrata Sengupta, artist and writer, Raqs Media Collective

18. Benny Kuruvilla, Researcher, New Delhi

19. Jacintha Kumarswamy, Sakti, Bangalore

20. Madhu Bhaduri

21. Umakant, Independent Researcher and Human Rights Advocate

22. Sabeena Gadihoke, Associate Professor Video & Television Production, AJK MCRC, Jamia Millia Islamia

23. Shohini Ghosh, Professor, AJK MCRC, Jamia Millia islamia

24. Sohail Akbar, Associate Professor Still Photography AJK Mass Communication Research Centre Jamia Millia Islamia

25. Jai Sen, CACIM

26. Sabina Kidwai

27. Ann Ninan

28. Shachi Chaturvedi, citizen and concerned woman, New Delhi

29. Shashwati Talukdar

30. Radha Khan, feminist, New Delhi/Gurgaon

31. Ashis Nayanar

32. Urvashi Wattal

33. Meenakshi Ganguly

34. Madhu and Shruti, Research Team at Jagori, New Delhi

35. Nirmala Karunan, activist

36. Veenu Shah

37. Chintan Upadhyay

38. Kavita Krishnan, AIPWA

39. Usha Saxena, feminist and activist, Gurgaon/Delhi

40. Manola K. Gayatri, PhD Fellow JNU

41. Kamayani Bali Mahabal, feminist and human rights activist, Mumbai

42. Om Prasad, PhD Scholar JNU, AISA

43. Aastha Chauhan, artist

44. Shveta Sarda, writer and translator

45. Aarti Sethi, PhD Scholar, Columbia University

46. Monica Narula, Artist, Raqs Media Collective

47. Shivam Vij, journalist

48. Gautam Bhan, faculty, Indian Institute of Human Settlement

49. Jeebesh Bagchi, Artist, Raqs Media Collective

50. Iram Ghufran, filmmaker

22 Comments leave one →
  1. Surbhi Badhwar permalink
    January 22, 2014 4:01 PM

    this is not just an issue of racism.. if any group of (mainstream) people find the lifestyle of a resident out of tune with theirs, they could just complain to the police (it could be as minor an issue as the kind of paintings one draws or contributing for colony’s religious fund or simply an offbeat profession which is beyond the comprehension of the majority in the neighbourhood). bhartis’s action, if given validity, could set a dangerous precedent for anyone opting for an alternate lifestyle. so this then is an issue of differences in culture/lifestyle not necessarily emanating from differences in race.

  2. Jayaram permalink
    January 22, 2014 5:09 PM

    I totally agree with the contents of this letter. Iadd that a bedrock principle of liberty, no person can be deprived of life or liberty without the due process of law has been violated by Minister Bharti and his suppoters. Arvind Kejriwal is complicit in this behaviour by his failure to restrain these tendencies. There is simply no excuse for it. Unfortunatley there is a lot of middle class moralising in AAP about corruption in police and other government departments, mostly of petty kind. While this is undoubtedly true, it should also be recognised that there are equally corrupting tendencies among various sections of the society such as landlords extorting unreasonbale rents, shop keepers exploiting shortages, auto rickshaws over charging, drugs and sex rackets and so on. If AAP wants to reform these tendencies it should adopt a systemic approach and prioritise what needs to be done in a democartic manner, not only in the Government but also in the society. Mohalla sabhas can help but not if they behave as Khap Panchayats. I am afraid that we are beginning to find out that many of the AAP activists are not liberal minded citizrens but deeply parochial bunch with pronounced North Indian bias. Not only foriegners, they may not be tolerant of Indians from other parts as well, from North East or the South. I hope I am wrong but I fear. Sadly I also suspect that their antics are also conditioned by the need for cheap publicity and an eye towards Lok Sabha elections

    – A disllusioned AAP supporter.

    • Tejaswi permalink
      January 22, 2014 10:03 PM

      I sympathize with you. Almost all of my friends are AAP supporters. And I have heard the same sort of sentiment expressed in the last few days. Even though I am not a fan of the AAP, I certainly hope I am proved wrong in the end about the AAP. You cannot afford to be disillusioned with one little setback or foolishness. The leaders will change, the people who are wrong will be separated from the true path. So, wait and see. I have no great faith in them, but it is still my hope that they get their act together, just so that the two arch scoundrels of the centrist and right wings don’t come back with their neo-liberal agenda.If you have already joined the party as my friends have, congratulations, finally you are participating in the democratic process in the real sense. But don’t let this be a setback to your desires or aspirations. The foolishness will subside once the reality sinks in. More leaders, you might be one yourself if you make up your mind, will rise from the midst of the followers and replace those who are found wanting. That is the ideal situation. But I am not sure if it will again become a top heavy party like all the others. I am sure better sense shall prevail and all the over-ambitious, too-clever-by-half leaders are cast aside by their own followers. Let us see. I wish you luck and offer my sympathy and my support to you, as an individual, of course, not to your party. But stick to it. It will be better.

  3. Tejaswi permalink
    January 22, 2014 5:22 PM

    Why are you all writing to them? You should not, you have no right to write to them. We are the greatest country in the world! We do not practise racism. That is something we read about in text books, the white people did that! We are from an ancient land, our sanathana dharma should be accepted by every human being. How can we be racist?

    For example, when an Indian student is beaten up in Australia, or New Zealand, or UK, don’t we protest it so vociferously and with so much indignation that the tv studios actually steam up and cameramen have to run around for mops and tissue to clean the lens? We are always against racism. When Indian men are beaten up in the US, don’t we immediately shout from the rooftops that it is an insult to this great country? Every news anchor, puts on his best suit, gleefully dressed for the occasion and makes sure, no, DEMANDS to know some answers from the foreign government? Our own government might ignore such demands, but how dare the foreign governments ignore us?

    When a cow with the Mad Cow disease is sought to be put to death by civic authorities in Britain, don’t we fight it tooth and nail? Of course, it is against our religion and how dare they trample on our religious rights?? Don’t they know that the Indian Constitution grants us universal rights to freedom of religion and practice? In this case, they should know that UNIVERSAL includes the globe. How dare they kill our holy cow? So we fight it all the way to the highest court of the land and make sure the blasted GORAS know that they cannot fool around with the OLD OLD ANCIENT religion and our religious sentiments.

    In fact, even our courts have shown the way, several times. So when some racist Aussie scoundrel comes up with underwear that displays Indian religious symbols, we go to court to fight this horrible racist injustice. So much indignation is apparent, in one case, the Madras High Court, and the lawyers who filed this case are told that the court is also hurt with the rash actions of the Aussie. With such wisdom and patience, the Great Court of this land issues a cease and desist order to the Aussie. Now, have we not shown the world that even our courts don’t stand racism?? How dare they accuse us of it? We sent a notice to the Aussie in Australia, so we know that the law of the land has very long hands indeed, reaching across the globe if needed.

    Don’t we tell the mighty americans that attacks against Indians will never be tolerated? Our Sikhs being attacked is not something we will take lying down.

    After all, what is this racism you are talking about? My American friends who come here are always amused about it. Showing an Indian penis to white women is not sexual harassment, nor is it racism. The poor Indian is well aware that those poor deprived white women may not have seen an Indian penis before. It is educational, and if things go right, white women will just swoon and immediately plant themselves on the said totem pole and know firsthand the joys of our ancient art of kamasutra. They laugh about it, they never complain. Is that RACISM? WHEN THEY DON’T COMPLAIN, BUT LAUGH??? How dare you???
    And never mind the groping, it is not sexual at all. Don’t our men have the right to know what the white breasts feel like? They are so tired of groping indian women. It is passe. So, adding a little masala to their life offends you? And how is it racism?

    Even our government can be accused of racism if that were so. Look at all the tourist sites. An Indian has to pay, say Rs25 to take a camera inside and click the Taj Mahal. But a white skinned person has to pay Rs. 500 to do the same thing. Is that racism? Heavens, no, it is foreign exchange, tourism and culture. So what if there are poor students coming on a shoestring budget to this country? They have to pay through their noses for the privilege of being in this ancient country.
    My british friends tell me, that the real estate prices go down if an Indian shifts into the neighbourhood. I gasped and protested the racist thought. How dare they? Indians are the purest people in the world. We never make a mess. We even respect cow dung and urine. So much so that we sell it in packets to those white ungrateful scoundrels.

    With all this in mind, can you in all honesty say that we are racist at all? How can we be? We are the greatest race in the world. It is unfortunate that the others were born in a lower race, unlike us, but we still treat them with kindness. Our scriptures tell us that we should be kind to the Shudras, the white people, the black people and all those unfortunate ones JO HAMAARE JAISE NAHIN HAIN.
    I hope you forget this ill-advised venture and apologise and retract this letter immediately

    :)) Have fun.

  4. Sonika permalink
    January 22, 2014 7:00 PM

    AAP has reached this stage by putting popular consent above institutional checks. Popular consent cannot function as the moral compass of society. I am not surprised either by somnath bharti’s views and actions as these are popularly held views of Africans by a majority of Indians , whether we publicly acknowledge it or not. Our obsession with skin color needs no elaboration. This incident should make AAP more sensitive to the perils of politics of mass mobilisation as what it produces in absence of legitimate checks is mobocracy. Delhi police cannot faulted in in this incident nor can the AAP insist that this is related to having Delhi police report to the Centre. Sadly, AAP has severely damaged its political credibility by launching ‘popular’ protest against home ministry as response to criticism of its unacceptable actions.

  5. Smita permalink
    January 22, 2014 9:03 PM

    Arvind Kejriwal, when interviewed by Barkha Dutt stopped her midway when she used the word mob, he told her, what mob? It was just 20-30 men. So 20-30 men ganging up on three women at night are not a mob?

  6. Dr.R.K.D.Goel permalink
    January 22, 2014 9:19 PM

    The Aam Admi are from street level having no knowledge of Law. Soon they will tire v by their over reactions to fulfill people’s demands. They will not be available after 2014 Parliament elections. They are dreaming to become PM of India. We have seen so many moments in India like VP Singh, Late Sri Jaiprakash Narain movement, all failed. Party can’t be built in one year.

  7. ramkrishnagoel permalink
    January 22, 2014 9:26 PM

    See after 2014 Parliament elections.They will bot be seen to listen public grievances.They want to become PM of India. Party can’t be built in one year,So many learnent people failed Like Late Mr.V.P.Singh. Late Sri Jaipraksh movement. Party with deep roots and long standing can come in politics.There are hundreds of local political party in India those coalation Governments at Center /States, The same fate will be of Aam Admi party soon.

  8. January 23, 2014 12:09 AM

    I have following issues with the statement given by these women’s organisation

    1. Do they know there has been a thriving narcotics , prostitution racket in that area. The information is in public domain (there are more than than hundred reports in newspapers and news channels in past two years) The most recent being a special half hour report in a news channel less than a month back. If they know it, as i am sure they do why havent they not mentioned it?
    2. Do they seriously believe such activities can continue blatantly for years without local police protection? If answer is no why are they so sympathetic to that cop?
    3. This Somnath guy is not my idea of a public person but don’t blame him or AAP for what he/ they haven’t done. Half truths and innuendos shouldn’t form a basis for anything.
    There is mention of AIIMS CCTV footage indicting Somnath . What is in that CCTV footage ? I would like them to verify things and not take anyone’s word for it because I know what is there- nothing to warrant such a mention . If there is some other CCTV footage that I am not aware of and which shows Somnath or anyone doing something objectionable he should be proceeded against legally immediately. But whispering suggestive mentions don;t mean much.

    4. Many of the statements given by women are versions given to them by police guys. Two cops approached them the same night and asked help from them to fix law min. Have they looked at the timeline of events leading upto women coming up with these statements and do they have names of persons who met them? Hint: it is very easy to do that.

    5. In one of the statements the word ‘cavity search’ was used – by whom? Cops, doctors, Somnath, AAP volunteers ? Clearly this was a ploy to deflect focus from other important issue of illegal activities going right under police watch.

    I am not at all justifying surrounding of the taxi in which some people including women were trying to leave the area or other such acts which led to these and some other people being taken to AIIMS. That was wrong. Police should have done that, if at all, and not people.

    I am also not denying that people may have really really over reacted that night but police inaction if not collusion is also equally to be blamed for such irresponsible intervention by locals.

    Please have a look at the police and other authorities’ collusion with illegal narcotics and flesh trade wh has been flourishing there for years and numerous complaints which residents have been writing to anyone and everyone they could before being so judgmental .

    None of this of course justifies community profiling or any other form of stereotyping which always victimises the innocent and gives a shield to the guilty (as in this case).

    It’s a complex issue there of organised crime incl human trafficking, drugs and collusion and patronage by corrupt officials and moral policing and knee jerk reactions..

    Women groups are expected to deal with the issue with greater sensitivity and understanding . And be more comprehensive inntheir approach in dealing with such issues if we want society’s intervention and participation in fighting gender discrimination. They are requested to look at the incident in a more even handed manner as this whole business involves critical women rights issues including trafficking of women.

    Rather than congratualitng SHO who is alleged to have colluded in all manner of illegal activities, they should instead campaign in that area against stereotyping people .

    And that a woman or a man involved in such an activity is quite likely to be a victim, a pawn. There is need to uncover the puppeteers who I suspect the police is shielding.

    The foreigners – students or whoever are scared anyway – scared of the police because they can make any case against them or involve them in illegal acts of others, scared of people because they cant distinguish the ordinary from the bad. And when repeated complaints to stop illegal activities fail, frustration may lead to reaction in unsavory manner and we must be watchful. But we can not do that by taking such one sided view of a complex situation as has bveen done by these women’s organisations.
    Vilifying one guy called Somnath is easy. But remember that solves nothing.

  9. SDave permalink
    January 23, 2014 6:28 AM

    Actually it was not 3 women. It was much more than even 20 30. Unfortunately police let them run away. These were the last few detained when finally police decided to slowly trail in after a public outrage. I agree to many things mentioned above. about the language of Bharati. But I spoke to the Mahila Aayog lady who was present and she said no one did any harassment. But while the people kept on asking the police to do raids the constables or the lower ranks were shooing them. Thats what you see on the camera. The Media was called so that there can be no hidden facts about what happened and everything was captured in audio visuals. As far as the language is concerned I think at his position he should have been more political It sounded bordering racism. But nothing to the extent media is making it up to. & Do u think that something like asking to urinate and that sort of stuff was happening around Media and they did not capture even the talk of it? Dont be naive. The culprits are taking full advantage of tv space they are getting and making it in their favour hiding the actual laws that they may have broken. Media should be ousting any source of information they have instead of airing rumours and making it an international issue. The fact is the real issue is the Gang rape of a Danish woman. Nobody is bringing their people in studios. or for that matter the Swiss embassy people? And who are u guys kidding. There is an interpole report on it google it up. Human trafficking from the African countries is a serious concern for both the countries. Well meaning students from these countries who have come here to study and are living in that area are equally the Victim of the situation as the other Indian locals. Who is answerable to them? The Locals wanted police to investigate a social concern. So, if u dont want to discriminate against outsiders why discriminate insiders. Agreed racism exist. But thats what police is there for. To investigate. What were they doing ignoring? Did u not see where it got escalated to in Goa? Or do u never get frustrated with the lack of policing? This was precisely the issue raised by the law Minister. He could have been more political with his expression. But that does not make it unlawful. Rest only the investigations of the committee can throw some light on. Someone said house prices go down in Britain if an Indian moves next door. If he was in Britain he would be behind bars for even suggesting that. House prices go down where the public culture is lax and there is more criminal activity. I am in a lovely area in Britain with lots of White and some Indians around me as well & we all enjoy a good amount of inflation even in the recessive years. What vague issues these people have picked up to fight over. They cant pick these issues against Gujrat CM for doing the atrocities and completely shirking his responsibility. https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=Y2G6KDmBS3Y Pick up any state. Punjab Riots in 1984, RamJanmaBhumiBabriMasjid etcetc.. Delhi CM was reduced to a police officer who got his uniform but no Laathis or Guns or Handcuffs to fight the criminals. Then you go and ask them what did they do for the rapes that happened since they came in power. You people deserve the answer : Go to hell, we cant help you cause police is not accountable to us. He puts his life in line amidst all the threats to sit on Dharna. He did not do it so more people can do the same. He did a protest to highlight his govt.s helplessness to protect its subjects. You say moral policing. What kind of atrocity is that? Police is there to maintain law and order. To prevent vigilantism. And the first step to the process is take action on public complaint and investigate. It failed in the first step again and again. Deliberately or not, I dont know. That will only come out if there was a strong Lokayukt that will have right to investigate independently of the influence of state or centre. Mr Shinde suspends police personnel based on triviality like a broken window in his house. And here people are being raped and murdered and police goes unaccountable? Get your priorities straight People. You may well end up getting what you deserve.

  10. U Majumdar permalink
    January 23, 2014 7:49 AM

    There has been a lot of noise about AAP not following ‘due process’. What is being overlooked is that the police did not follow due process on receiving complaints from an MLA and local residents. This vigilantism has brought on public record the fact that
    A) the Delhi Police is not answerable to the State government and can defy them with impunity
    B) the law and order situation in Delhi is outside the Chief Minister’s control
    C) there is collusion between the police and crime networks in Delhi (as all over the world)

    Yes black women were involved. However this should not prevent us from being blind to the fact that criminals REGARDLESS OF COLOUR AND GENDER need to be prosecuted. Were they criminals? We don’t know without proof. Significantly the women refused to undergo blood tests.

    Racism and sexism is a problem all over the world. Please don’t let it blind us to the fact that black women CAN be criminals.

    Do watch Rajdeep Sardesai ‘s interview with Arvind Kejriwal for a different perspective.

  11. sameer permalink
    January 23, 2014 11:33 AM

    “yeh hum aur aap jaise nahin hain” this is what Somnath Bharti said as per media reports which is also quoted in this letter.you could say that this is referring to entire community but one interpretation could be that could be it is just referring to African nationals living in that locality and not to a wider group.another aspect one can consider is that whether Somnath Bharti has a track record of racism which I don’t think he has It is also not a question of intolerance for alternate lifestyles because this incident didn’t happen because of complaint of “immoral” behavior like partying which are one of cause for vigilante attacks in our country but due to complaint of drug trafficking and sex trade..I think that these arguments should also be considered

  12. Dinesh Kumar permalink
    January 23, 2014 5:13 PM

    In this video,nowhere local residents sound like racists.They have genuine concerns.

  13. zafar permalink
    January 23, 2014 5:51 PM

    Mr. Bharti should understand that there is a difference in Law minister and law itself..;)….He looks like the “right” side of AAP, this incident proves that AAP is full of “Moral Cops” in the name of Nationalists. AAP.

  14. January 24, 2014 2:51 AM

    I will be very grateful to this motley crew of permanent victims if they let me know how many of them actually live in Khidki? Ever visited the area? Why a law and order issue is being converted to a racism issue? May be because law and order is not glamours or worthy enough for them?

  15. manny permalink
    January 27, 2014 11:22 AM

    It is absurd how people are trying to colour the incident. Just because a criminal happens to be from a particular discernible race, caste, community or gender, should it be impossible to report a crime. Infact ifthe women in question were forced to engage in acts by trafickers, the attitude of people crying wolf over an issue which had nothing to do with racism is helping trafickers reinforce their ground by making sure that if foreign citizens are forced into illegal activities, then everyone will be too afraid to speak up for the fear of being labelled a racist.

  16. March 5, 2014 8:31 AM

    At this time I am ready to do my breakfast, once having my breakfast
    coming again to read further news.

Trackbacks

  1. AAP Leader and Delhi Law Minister Somnath Bharti Faces Flak For Racist Remark, Action
  2. A Visitor’s Guide to India » AFRICA IS A COUNTRY
  3. The horrific everyday racist treatment of Africans abroad | TIA beta
  4. Everyday Racist Treatment Of Africans Abroad | Afrocentric Confessions

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