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HindustanTimes Thu,28 Aug 2014

I feel violated, says Nigerian envoy

Satya Prakash, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, January 18, 2014
First Published: 10:47 IST(18/1/2014) | Last Updated: 11:11 IST(18/1/2014)

Taking strong exception to some African women allegedly being held captive in a taxi for hours and then being forced to undergo medical examination at a hospital in the capital, Nigerian High Commissioner to India Ndubuisi V Amaku on Friday demanded that perpetrators of this “heinous act” be held accountable.

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“As an African I feel personally violated and outraged that in the 21st century such an incident can take place against citizens of either India or any other country,” the Nigerian High Commissioner told HT.

“I urge both the Central and Delhi government to please rise up and reassure foreigners like us in this country, especially Blacks and Africans, that not only you condemn this incident but also act against perpetrators,” Amaku said. Action was needed to reassure the African Diaspora in India that they are welcome to this country, he added.

Amaku, however, said: “I have no reason to believe that Indians in general are influenced by considerations of race or religion or any other primordial considerations.”

Four African women were allegedly held captive in a taxi for over three hours and forcibly taken to a hospital for medical examination in the capital on Wednesday night after Delhi Law Minister Somnath Bharti asked the police to act against them.He said: “After Goa incident (killing of a Nigerian national) during which some sections of the media distorted and sensationalised my reaction to the tragic incident, I was reluctant to give any press interview. But given the latest incident in Delhi which happened very close to the seat of power of national and state governments, I am again persuaded to think that there appears to have no lessons learnt from the unfortunate incident.“How can someone say that black people break laws?” he wondered.

The High Commissioner said: “If the language and tone of discussion I have read from media reports are correct - it is imperative that some politicians and law enforcement agents need more education and training in race relations and engagements.”

“Some of us are troubled by the fact that there has not been any official condemnation of this unlawful incident,” Amaku added.Nigerian High Commission’s counsel Shilpi Jain said: “If the news reports are correct, then there is a clear violation of fundamental right to non-discrimination on the ground of race, religion, caste, creed or place of birth guaranteed under Article 15 of the Constitution.”


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