By Violet Pereira, Team Mangalorean
Mangalore: Senior Indian National Congress leader and AICC General Secretary Oscar Fernandes visited the M V Shetty Ladies Hostel, Bendurwell here on August 18.
Addressing the North-East students Oscar said, "We will reassure your safety here in Mangalore. We are with you. He said not to worry about the present rumours which are just rumours and not reality. If you have any problems or if you receive threats from anyone, call us and we will help you out".
Further he said, "North-East is very familiar to me because I have worked since 1982 till date in various places at Mizoram, Manipur, Assam, Sikkim and Nagaland." He also said that he would be meeting North-East students in Bangalore on 24 August to strengthen them and assure them that they are safe in Bangalore. He said, "We are very happy that you came all the way from the Northeast to pursue your education because Mangalore is a beautiful city and center of learning". He told them to concentrate on their education and forget all differences.
A minister from Assam has arrived in Bangalore and we are trying to assure the people of the North-East wherever they are. He also said that many leaders will arrive in Bangalore from Delhi to discuss about the issue and it will be resolved as soon as possible.
One of the Northeast students said that he believes that 99.99% of the rumours that the people of the North-East would be attacked after Eid-ul-Fitr on Aug 20 are false. But there is still a 0.01% doubt. "We want hundred percent assurance when it comes to such kind of rumours because it is a insult to those who have suffered due to such rumours. We are students and we have a long way to go; if we are not safe then how can we pursue our education? Ministers and police come here and gave us assurances, but we need the Muslim community to come and assure us that we are safe." He also urged the media not to publish the issue with communal colours because it has nothing to do with the communal fight but is an issue of Assam.
MLA U T Khader addressing the NE students said that the government will find out the person who circulated the SMS. "This is a testing time for you to face such situations because once you complete your education, you will go out in the society to work. Be bold and confront the challenges. We Mangaloreans are with you to support you and to assure you our support, we will have Eid -ul-Fitr celebration here in the hostel," he said.
P V Mohan, Corporator Naveen D'Souza, and other congress leaders were also present.