Parliament on Friday stood up for the right of people from northeastern states to live anywhere in the country in a move aimed at reassuring them that the government would ensure their safety and taking action against the miscreants.
In a rare show of support, both Houses set aside the question hour to discuss the fear psychosis amongst northeast people. “What is at stake is the unity of our country. What is at stake is communal harmony,” Singh told Parliament, emphasising that it was their solemn obligation to restore normalcy.
Rajya Sabha — which suspended the Question Hour — ended the discussion with a resolution committing to the rights of people to live anywhere in the country. In the Lok Sabha, speaker Meira Kumar invoked her discretion to allow the discussion on the “serious and sensitive issue”.
Home minister Sushil Kumar Shinde said the Intelligence Bureau was working to trace the source of the scare. “It is difficult but when they are tracked down, we will fix them,” Shinde said in his concluding remarks in the Lok Sabha that complimented the BJP-ruled Karnataka government for its handling of the situation.
The Prime Minister too had echoed the government’s commitment to act. “We must curb all the elements which are creating trouble on this sensitive issue,” Manmohan Singh said.
In its resolution, the Rajya Sabha demanded a thorough probe into the spread of rumours of impending attacks against northeast citizens in the wake of the Assam violence.
Leader of the opposition in the Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj and leader of the opposition in the Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley had earlier pitched for safety of people from the northeast and stressed on the need to rise above party lines.
There were also demands for stricter control on the social media platform. SP’s Ramgopal Yadav and BSP’s Brajesh Pathak in the Rajya Sabha suggested some control over this media.