IMPHAL, August 26: The Karnataka Home Minister R Ashoka today met several parents of students studying in the state and appealed to them to send back their sons and daughters to Karnataka.
After arrival, R Ashoka who is also the Deputy CM met the state Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh and Home Minister Gaikhangam at the CM secretariat. The state Chief Secretary DS Poonia and DGP Yumnam Joykumar was also present at the meeting.
Briefing mediapersons after the meeting R Ashoka said, out of 3.5 lakhs of NE people staying in the state 2.5 lakhs study or work in Bangalore city alone. Most of the students are either undergoing either engineering or medical courses.
Informing the media that at least 17 cases have been taken up and 22 rumour mongers have been arrested from Bangalore city Home Minister R Ashoka said, Karnataka had not seen communal or racial violence in the last 30/40 years.
He assured that there should not be any cause for alarm in Bangalore and appealed to the parents and guardians to send their wards back to the state.
The Karnataka Dy CM was accompanied by state DGP lalrokhuma Pachau, a Mizo IPS officer from the northeast.
Minister Ashoka said, the people of Karnataka have been regarding the northeast people as their own brethren which sadly were disturbed by rumour mongers in the state.
A mass exodus of more than 6000 people of NE origin staying in Karnataka followed as a result of the rumours which purportedly said that if they do not return by August 20 Ramzan, violence will come.
Yet not a single episode of violence was reported from any quarter in Karnataka.
He assured that Karnataka is the safest place for any northeastner. He further said that only about 35 thousand NE people had left the state while more than three lakh people are still staying at Bangalore.
Home Minister Ashoka refused to comment on the alleged involvement of Pakistan in gthe recent rumours.
He added, special trains have been arranged for NE students and professionals at Guwahati for their return to Karnataka and Bangalore.