Kapil Sibal to lend ears to NE racial issues

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IMPHAL, May 5: In the wake of widespread protests and campaign for justice in the murder of Bangalore student Loitam Richard, Union Human Resources Development (HRD) Minister Kapil Sibal has invited Manipuri students based outside the state and some other representatives from the northeast region on May 8 at New Delhi.

The delegation will include Monika Khangembam, a Bangalore based Manipuri who started the ‘Justice for Richard’ campaign in the net.

The delegation is expected to submit a representation to the Union Minister with regard to the racial profiling issues of NE students studying in various parts of the country and also the harassment of NE people employed outside the region.

Even though the Union Home Minister P Chidambaram had clarified in the Rajya Sabha yesterday that there is racial discrimination NE students and people, there are enough incidents to prove its existence according to civil society organizations here.

The state Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh who is in New Delhi for the NCTC had promised the parents of Loitam Richard that he would meet his Karnataka counterpart at the sidelines of the meeting to impress upon him the need for proper investigation into the Richard murder case and also on the protection of Manipuris staying Bangalore.

However, it is yet to be ascertained whether O Ibobi met the Karnataka Chief Minister DV Sadananda Gowda or not.

Meanwhile, public protests against the murder of Richard and other cases of racial profiling have gathered momentum with frontline student bodies joining in the protests.

Today, human chains were formed in front of different schools and colleges of Manipur to protest the Richard murder under the aegis of AMSU, MSF, DESAM, KSA, SWAK and SUK.

The main slogans of the protests are ‘Justice for Richard’, ‘Justice for Dana Sangma’, Justice for Okram Laba’, ‘Stop violence against NE students’, and ‘Protect NE students.’

The student bodies have lined up several other agitations.

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