By Mayank Jain:
Nothing can justify the reckless vigilantism carried out by our honorable law minister, Somnath Bharti against African nationals in Khirki Extension in New Delhi which has not only made it difficult for us to trust him with law and order but has also left these people in lurch as neighbourhood locals are allegedly racially and physically abusing them.
Lots of people have been asked to vacate their houses and they have been forced to live in other nearby areas; but for how long? The fear of the law minister striking at wee hours of the night with local activists without proper warrants and legal orders can’t be dismissed and these nationals are now living in the dark sphere of fear in the national capital even when nothing substantial has been proved against them yet.
People of African origin who are bearing the brunt of racial discrimination and abuse at the hands of neighborhoods are finding it hard to survive as they are left with nowhere to spend nights and mindless accusations of dealing in drugs and sex trade are falling upon them from all over. Is this the Delhi we want to live in? Where people are branded and judged on the basis of their nationality? Where activism takes place without paying any heed to the law and rights of a citizen resulting in widespread violations? Where the minister is always right?
Certain questions have to be raised now, since we have trusted the party with our vote and a mere public referendum can’t force them to act against anyone they wish to. Even Congress has provided them support and they should make the most of this opportunity to leave an indelible imprint of an honest and agile government but we don’t need a Khap Panchayat Raj in the national capital which acts on its whims and fancies.
To illustrate the horror that one act has ensued, one can visit any of these places and ask for these nationals and they will run away fearing another round of vigilantism is coming their way and it is taking ugly forms. Resident Welfare Associations in many south Delhi areas are planning to pass a resolution to stop renting apartments to Africans.Â Stone pelting and abusing the people of African origin when they walk on the street is very common nowadays. It is hugely unfair to label the whole community on the basis of actions of some and the vigilante approach to solving such a sensitive issue is rather immature.
Was Somnath Bharti trying to become a hero of the masses by insulting the weak people? Was he trying to gain a political leap with his actions or was it just his ideology at play?
Whatever has happened can’t be undone but the least Aam Aadmi Party can do is to apologize for breaking the law to this community and make sure they don’t get ostracized by the masses for no fault of their own. The display of power upon the meek is a sign of foolishness.
I hope they are listening to the changing sentiments and making amends in the party’s ideology which seems to be going haywire as of now.