New Delhi: At a time when popular social media platforms have highlighted certain unfortunate instances of discrimination against people from Northeast India and “corona fighters” like medical workers and airline staff, a heartwarming episode of Gujarat Police coming to the timely rescue of a group of girls from the region is being widely appreciated.
In a video shared by the Facebook page ‘Let’s Promote North-East’ on the popular social networking site, personnel of the Gujarat police promptly came to the aid of the five girls after they were reportedly harassed by their immediate neighbour.
The girls who are all working in Gujarat capital Ahmedabad had rented the apartment together some time ago.
According to one of the girls in the video, their immediate neighbour knocked on the door early in the morning during the past weekend. “He had come with a few other people in the building and raised a ruckus, accusing us of spreading coronavirus in the building. He then asked us to gather all our belongings and immediately vacate the premises,” the girl can be seen telling a police officer in Hindi.
“We told him that it wasn’t possible as we had already paid the rent,” says another girl.
The police officer then proceeds to assure the girls that they needn’t be fearful.
“I have already spoken to everyone and given them a piece of my mind in your presence. No building resident will again step inside your apartment without our permission. You are citizens of this country and it is our duty to uphold your rights. So, you needn’t fear anyone. We will be here the moment you call us,” he tells the young ladies.
The police officer also said that he would be temporarily deploying police personnel to watch over them as well as leave a list of mobile numbers of the main people in his team in case they faced any other difficulty.
“You just call us and we will be reaching here within a few minutes. You don’t have to go anywhere,” he reiterates.
Although EastMojo was unable to establish contact with the police officer or the girls in the video, it is learned that the incident happened in a locality in Ahmedabad. Areas like Vastrapur, Thaltej and Sarkhej-Gandhinagar Highway have a sizeable population of people from the Northeast who are mostly employed in the city’s many hospitals, restaurants, spas and boutiques.
Amid the Coronavirus or Covid-19 pandemic scare, there have been several reports of people from the region being especially singled out owing to their Mongoloid features. Many people from the region have alleged being labelled as “Coronavirus” or even being contemptuously spat upon, EastMojo had reported in a series of stories filed in the last couple of days.
Caused by the novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), coronavirus or Covid-19 made its way all the way from Wuhan in China after jumping from animals to humans. It has since spread at a rapid pace to infect thousands across the globe within a short period.
Compared to even several developed nations, India had moved proactively to counter the spread of the pandemic. The current efforts by the central and the state governments have focused entirely on containing the disease’s spread, with several districts in the country observing complete lockdown. By Tuesday evening, India had over 500 confirmed coronavirus cases and reported 10 deaths.