Two local youths have been arrested for allegedly assaulting a Nigerian student this week even as police on Saturday asserted that the allegation that the foreigner was “racially abused” has not been established.
Expressing solidarity with the Nigerian student and seeking justice for a Tanzanian girl student (who was allegedly attacked in Bengaluru), a group of around 70 students under the banner of African Students Association and other organisations held a peaceful protest at Indira Park, holding banners demanding “to stop discrimination and humiliation of African students” in Indian cities.
“Two local youths—Shoaib Ali and Faizal Ali have been arrested following the complaint lodged by the Nigerian student. However, with regard to the allegation that the local youths passed racial comments against the Nigerian student has not been established,” Deputy Commissioner of Police (West Zone) A Venkateshwera Rao told PTI.
The DCP said it was a road-side brawl between the Nigerian student Orolabe Ibidola and local youths on Thursday night after the Nigerian student “put” his face inside the window of a woman’s car when she was in conversation with the locals for an address.
“The local youths said that after the lady raised objection then only they asked the Nigerian student on why he was interfering,” the DCP said quoting the local youths.
However, Orolabe Ibidola, said when he was returning home from a religious place on Thursday night around 10 local youths allegedly passed “racist” comments against him and beat him up along with two other Nigerian nationals after which he lodged a complaint with Banjara Hills Police, who registered a case under IPC Sections 323 (voluntarily causing hurt) and 341 (wrongful restraint) against the local youth.
A counter complaint from local residents was lodged against the Nigerian, alleging assault by the latter, the senior police officer said adding, “we are inquiring into the complaint.”
Mohd Ahmed, a leader of World Organisation of Students and Youths, who was among those who participated in the sit-in demonstration said, “It was peaceful. We just wanted to conveynot to humiliate African students. Accept us…we have come here for studies. Those who are violating rules then punish them but don’t humiliate and discriminate the innocent.”
Alleging that “racist comments” were passed against the Nigerian, students from around 15 different countries demanded for ending racism and also sought for taking action against all those responsible in connection with the assault on the Tanzanian woman student in Bengaluru.