Pakistan has assured India that it will "look into" its assertion that elements in Pakistan used social media to whip up panic that led to the exodus of people from the northeastern states, but demanded that New Delhi first provide evidence for it.
"The Indian minister has said that rumours were generated from Pakistan through cellular services," Pakistani Interior Minister Rehman Malik told reporters in Islamabad while referring to his phone conversation with India's Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde Sunday.
"I had requested him (Shinde) to provide evidence in this regard to us and we will take care of it," Malik added.
In his telephonic conversation with Malik, Shinde had conveyed that elements based in Pakistan used social networking websites to circulate false pictures and stories so as to whip up communal sentiments in India.Home minsiter Sushilkumar Shinde said on Monday, India will provide proof to Pakistan very soon.
Thousands of people from the northeast fled the southern Indian cities of Bangalore and Chennai after hate messages were spread through mobile phones and on Facebook in the past two days, threatening retaliation for the ethnic violence in the northeastern state of Assam last month.
Home Secretary R.K. Singh Saturday said the bulk of rumours of imminent attacks on northeastern people for the killings of Muslims in Assam originated in Pakistan.
In New Delhi, sources in the Pakistan high commission vehemently rejected the charges and contended that such remarks only widened the trust deficit between the two countries, specially ahead of talks between the foreign ministers of India and Pakistan in Islamabad next month.
Bangalore clebrates Eid amid high alert
Bangalore celebrated Eid-ul-Fitr festival in peace on Monday marking the end of the month-long Ramadan fast by Muslims amid tight security, as the city gets over the hysteria that caused about 30,000 northeast people to flee during the past three-four days.
"The situation in Bangalore is under control with no untoward incident during the last two days. Security has been tightened across the city to ensure a peaceful Eid celebration," Karnataka chief minister Jagadish Shettar said Sunday in a message greeting Muslims on the festival.
With the exodus of northeast people to Guhawati halting on Sunday, the state administration and the railways have heaved a sigh though police continued to be vigilant with enhanced security measures, including deployment of Rapid Action Force (RAF), Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), Karnataka State Reserved Police (KSRP) and City Armed Police (CAR). Assam prays for peace this Eid
"About 17,000 personnel drawn from RAF, CRPF, KSRP and CAR have been deployed across the city to ensure peace and maintain law and order. Besides guarding vital installations and VIP areas, patrolling sensitive areas, including localities where minorities and northeast people reside has been intensified," city Police Commissioner Jyotiprakash Mirji said.
Tripura people safe in other states: Manik Sarkar
The students, professionals and other people from Tripura staying in Karnataka, Maharashtra and other states were safe and there were no reports of any attack on them, Tripura chief minister Manik Sarkar said on Monday.
"All the students, professionals and other people from Tripura are safe in Karnataka, Maharashtra and other states in India. There are no reports of attack on them," said Sarkar, reacting to rumours of attacks on people from the northeastern region of the country.
He said Tripura's rural development minister Jitendra Chowdhury and Chief Secretary Sanjay Kumar Panda spoke to their counterparts in Karnataka and urged them to ensure security of students and other people from the northeast in Bangalore and other parts of that state.
Terming the recent Kokrajhar (in Assam) violence as painful, Sarkar said "opportunist forces are trying to destroy the peace in the country, especially the mixed populated northeast region".
A group of guardians have requested Sarkar to take appropriate steps for the safety and security of their children studying in Karnataka and other states.
Assam CM asks counterparts to end special trains
The Assam government on Sunday went into emergency mode to check any possibility of post-Eid violence as chief minister Tarun Gogoi asked his counterparts across the country not to allow the running of special trains in a bid to stem the exodus of northeasterners.
"This (exodus) sends the wrong signal to our people and to people elsewhere," he said.
Blaming the communal clashes in western Assam on "outside forces in collaboration with certain internal forces", Gogoi invited three former police chiefs for a brainstorming session with the state’s chief secretary and top administration and police officials to tackle a possible outbreak of violence after Eid on Monday.
(With agency inputs)