Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal said the Delhi Police were incapable of a free and fair probe into the death of Arunachal Pradesh student Nido Taniam as he joined protests Delhi’s Jantar Mantar over the 19-year-old’s death.
Kejriwal demanded action against those responsible for the death of the Arunachal Pradesh student and announced steps to stop racial discrimination against people from the northeast.
“I saw the news on television. We ordered an independent magisterial enquiry within an hour... We did not order it under any pressure. Some people wrote to me asking why I ordered another enquiry when police are already probing it.
“I told them the Delhi Police are totally corrupt. I ordered a magisterial inquiry into the incident because the Delhi Police are also accused. They would have hidden the truth in the case,” Kejriwal said.
Read: Delhi: NE students protest Arunachal boy’s death
People from northeastern states at a candle light vigil in New Delhi to protest against racism and beating up and killing of a student – Nido Taniam, also spelt Tania – in Delhi. (PTI Photo)
Kejriwal, who was also joined by his ministerial colleague Manish Sisodia, said his government would take corrective steps to create awareness and check any discrimination against people of northeast.
He said the Delhi government agreed in principle that school textbooks should adequately include the history of northeast. “I have met education officials already and in all likelihood, the history of northeast will be taught in Delhi schools starting next session,” Delhi education minister Manish Sisodia said.
The government had on January 31 ordered the enquiry to probe Taniam’s death.
The magisterial inquiry into the case will be completed in three to four weeks, Kejriwal said. “Our criminal justice system is in a bad state. To make Delhi safe, we need to refresh the system and make people accountable.”
Read: Delhi HC seeks report on Nido Taniam's death
Without taking any names, the Delhi chief minister also charged “netas” for making fake promises. "All these ‘netas’ who are coming here. They would say this would be done, that would be done. This will not happen. There has to be a justice this time. If there is no justice in the case, then there won't be any justice in the future.
Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi had on Monday joined the protesters at Jantar Mantar and assured them that the government would ensure that they get respect and justice.
“I have never considered myself as chief minister. I am a common man. We need to work together. We will do whatever we can to fight such discrimination,” Kejriwal said.
The Delhi CM also apologised for having joined the Taniam death protests late. “Nido’s fight is my fight too. I apologise I joined on the fourth day of protests.”
The CM sharpened his attack on the police as he said the “lax” police were the reason behind the rise in crimes in Delhi. Kejriwal and his Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) supporters had recently staged a 33-hour demonstration outside Rail Bhavan in the city to protest against the Delhi Police and demanded that they be brought under the Delhi government’s control.
Read: Rahul assures justice in Nido Taniam death case, BJP says Modi speech provoked move
The Delhi government would form a committee for the people from northeast, the CM said. “We will notify that committee. This would be the official committee of the Delhi government. In that, you will give suggestion, we will implement these suggestions,” he said.
"We will not rest until an anti-racial discrimination law is passed," said Binalakshmi Nepram, founder of Manipur Gun Survivors Network.
Taniam was allegedly beaten up by two shopkeepers on Wednesday in south Delhi's Lajpat Nagar market following a quarrel over his appearance and clothing. He died in a hospital Thursday. Two people were arrested following the incident.